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used to feel homebirth was best... but not anymore - Page 12

post #221 of 246

As a first timer

Reading this entire thread including the OP's story has done nothing if not completely support the case for homebirth, and solidify my belief in the safety of homebirth. Can't wait to do it.

Dia
post #222 of 246
Quote:
Originally Posted by thefragile7393 View Post
Haven't studies been linked in this thread already? Or did I miss something?
You didn't miss anything. People just don't want to read them or believe them.
post #223 of 246
Quote:
Originally Posted by kittywitty View Post
You didn't miss anything. People just don't want to read them or believe them.
To be fair (and have no doubt, I firmly believe that homebirth is safer for most mamababies), it's rather that people can read the same studies and come to different conclusions. No study is perfect (no study CAN be perfect), so all are open to some interpretation, which means that the biases and beliefs we bring to reading them influences our conclusions based on them. This is normal and to be expected (although frustrating when we're trying to convince someone else of something WE find to be SO OBVIOUS, and they're just not seeing it ).
post #224 of 246
Quote:
Originally Posted by pannacotta View Post

when something bad happens, and you don't know if it's going to happen to you, wouldn't you rather have that (imperfect) but potentially lifesaving safety net?
I'll take my chances with the one-in-a-thousand chance of needing instant emergency medical attention that can't be done at home by a skilled midwife (which likely isn't instantly available in my fairly rural area hospitals anyway). In the 999 other cases, I'd much rather be at home and have all the many, many, many advantages of a homebirth. I know there are risks to a homebirth, just as there are risks to ANY birth (and any pregnancy). There is also a very high chance that if you birth at a hospital, regardless of how committed you and your support team are to birth just the way you want it, at least one thing will happen that you did not want. For some people, that one-in-a-thousand chance of something happening where you are better off in a hospital is worth the 90% or more (I'm guessing at the numbers here) that your hospital birth experience will be less, sometimes vastly less, than what you wanted. I think most homebirthers feel the opposite.
post #225 of 246
Pannacotta ~ I feel like I do have that lifesaving net. That "instant" emergency medical need is so unlikely. And if there is an emergency/complication, our mws or our instincts should kick in (as the op's did I might add) so that we have plenty of time to get to the hosp, calling ahead to let them know we're on our way w/an emergency. Simple. It's not 100% full proof but I'll take those odds since I believe the odds are stacked against me of having a safe birth in the hospital.

Fear is running rampant through the birthing community and it makes me terribly sad. It's robbing so many women of having good, safe births. I don't birth in the hospital for a lot of reasons. One of the biggest reasons is that I am so much more likely to have an unnecessary intervention and it's also very likely I will have to "bargain" or get "permission" for basic rights - to walk around, eat, drink, be left alone, have my baby right after birth, "room-in" etc. That's not even to mention the other unnecessary protocols like EFM, hep locs, etc. If women have to bargain for the birth they want, they are probably putting themselves at risk for unnecessary interventions that could lead to more interventions that have a weightier consequence. And those could potentially lead to life threatening circumstances that were actually caused by the dr./hosp. It happens. Can happen at home but it's far less likely.

I did my research 10 yrs. ago about the safety of homebirth so I can't go through all the various books/research I did. Now, when I need a little confirmation, I just flip through Ina Mae's latest book and look at her stats. She's tracked her mama's for 30 yrs. That's plenty good for me.
post #226 of 246
i've been wanting to chime in here but only just now managed to sit down and read all that's been posted. so much has been said in so many ways, i'll just rephrase one of those things that is key for me:

all the studies taken together told me that the risk of death to me or to my baby was the same or unknowably slightly higher or lower for a low risk planned homebirth *with a qualified attendant* vs. a hospital birth in the same circumstance.

YES, the risk of an unknown placenta accreta causing massive blood loss at home or of a rare amniotic fluid embolism is terrifying.

BUT, the risk of a fatal infection from an unnecessary c/s, or any of the other wacky things that can happen to you in the hospital is also terrifying to me.

the various studies (yes, no study is perfect) told me that, in the rare case that i or my baby met with one of those rare fatal complications at home or at the hospital, THE CAUSE OF DEATH at the hospital MIGHT BE DIFFERENT than at home, but the RISK OF DEATH FROM ANY CAUSE would be pretty much the same in both places. since i care more about the RISK of death than the CAUSE of death, i feel VERY comfortable choosing to birth at home, where i also get to avoid the risk of forceps, pitocin, vacuum extraction, episiotomy, etc., which are also risks which terrify me, though they be not fatal .

IF somehow hospital risks improve or a new study convinces me hospitals are clearly safer by some amount, i would have to reconsider. but i would probably be willing to accept a slightly higher (but still very low) risk of death at home in order to avoid the (to me) very high risk of (non-fatal) birth injury/trauma at the hospital (and in order to have the chance of repeating the beautiful experience that my first homebirth was for me). but, that's me and has a lot to do with my many bad experiences with condescending doctors and the many horrible stories i've heard from friends that have scared the bejeezis out of me.

also, statistics are statistics and necessarily take no account of local/individual conditions. if i had the option of an OB i trusted or a MW i didn't (yes, i can imagine that happening), i would go with the OB. if i lived far from a hospital, i'm not sure what i would do, but i could imagine choosing to go to the hospital at the onset of labor. i'm thankful those aren't my only options.

my heart goes out to the original poster. i am glad you are still with us and alive to be mommy to your lucky baby. i am glad you posted here and gave us something to think about. i wish you peace and healing. and, by all means, plan to birth in the hospital next time if that is what makes you most comfortable!
post #227 of 246
Quote:
Originally Posted by threadbey View Post

YES, the risk of an unknown placenta accreta causing massive blood loss at home or of a rare amniotic fluid embolism is terrifying.
Well, to be fair, those things would kill you in the hospital too. OBs love to quote the "a woman can bleed to death in under five minutes at a homebirth" line, but you'd be screwed no matter where it took place if it were so. Same for AFE, which is almost always fatal.
post #228 of 246
Quote:
Originally Posted by barefootpoetry View Post
Well, to be fair, those things would kill you in the hospital too. OBs love to quote the "a woman can bleed to death in under five minutes at a homebirth" line, but you'd be screwed no matter where it took place if it were so. Same for AFE, which is almost always fatal.
how about "those things COULD kill you in the hospital too." i don't have studies at my finger tips, but i would hazard a guess that chances of survival are better (if still slim) if you are in the hospital when those particular crises occur. as the original poster said, it's amazing she survived at all - there's no way she would have survived had she not been in the hospital when the problem reached crisis point and was recognized. she did have a better chance in the hospital and the technology and professionals available at the hospital saved her life. but, yes, it might have gone the other way, even in the hospital.

if i could know that i was going to have a massive bleed or an embolism, i would ABSOLUTELY choose to have the birth in the hospital so as to have whatever faint hope of survival i could. but the point is we can't know those things ahead of time. and we can't know ahead of time who will die or be injured because (or in spite of) the fact that they were at the hospital.
post #229 of 246
Studies have shown repeatedly that mothers are more likely to survive homebirth; even Dr. Amy acknowledges that, and that is really saying something. You are more likely to hemorrhage in a hospital, especially after a C-section, than at home, and midwives are trained to handle hemorrhage. You are using the fact that you went to the hospital, early in labor, and then hemorrhaged after a C-section to decree that homebirth is unsafe...which makes no sense. Your story is simply proof that C-sections and hospitals are dangerous.

You're correct that if you're high risk for serious conditions like accreta, you probably are safer in the hospital; that's why midwives risk people out of homebirth and refer them to the hospital, rather than accepting them as patients. While midwives are trained to handle most complications, there are a few that can only be handled at the hospital, like ruptured uterus or cord prolapse. There are some obstetric emergencies where you can do about as much at home as you can in the hospital, depending on what it is. That's no reason to say that EVERYONE should birth in the hospital though.

As for midwives and hospitals working together, THAT is a great goal. There are places that do that...birth centers. Sadly there are too few of them.
post #230 of 246
Quote:
Originally Posted by threadbey View Post
how about "those things COULD kill you in the hospital too." i don't have studies at my finger tips, but i would hazard a guess that chances of survival are better (if still slim) if you are in the hospital when those particular crises occur.
Well, okay, I'll give you that. You're definitely right there. But odds still aren't that great, even in a hospital. AFE has a 60-80% mortality rate. And I believe that if placenta accreta is diagnosed prior to labor, the mother shouldn't go for a homebirth...of course, there are cases like the OP's where it wasn't discovered until it was almost too late. Thankfully technology is MUCH better now at detecting accreta and we now have a 7% mortality rate instead of 25%...and thank heavens that the OP was tuned in so well to her body that she was able to recognize that something was going horribly wrong!

And as for the fabled "bleed to death in five minutes," yes, it would still kill you no matter where you were. A massive PPH would certainly better handled in a hospital, for sure, but one of that magnitude is beyond help, sadly. You have the word of my nurse friend who has attended many births and birth-related crises in the past 20 years on that one.

Thank the gods that a woman's chance of suffering any of these things is very, very slim!
post #231 of 246
So you planned a hb, felt intuitively that something was wrong early on, and went to the hospital where you needed to be. Thank you for reaffirming my decision to hb. I truly believe that if there is a real need for me to be at the hospital, then that is where I will end up.

I do agree that the whole climate of birth in hospitals needs to change also, because not everyone is a hb candidate.
post #232 of 246

I had placenta accreta too!

I have not read all the responses, but I cried when I read your story. I too had placenta accreta after the birth of my first daughter. A D&C stopped the bleeding, but immediately after the birth of my second daughter, I almost bled to death (and to those who say OBs love to quote patients could bleed to death in five minutes, well let me tell you as an RN, YES, I did almost did bleed to death in under 10 minutes, they COULD NOT stop the bleeding) and I had to have an emergency hysterectomy. I TOTALLY agree with you! 100 percent about the birth in a hospital! Thank you for writing this! It is rare to have placenta accreta, but when it does occur, it can be deadly and I am glad you trusted yourself and wish you the best. Thanks again for writing this mama. You are a brave woman!
post #233 of 246
Quote:
Originally Posted by mytwogirls View Post
I TOTALLY agree with you! 100 percent about the birth in a hospital!
Thank goodness you're okay. BUT - what you're telling me is that because YOU had a very rare problem that made it safer for you to birth in a hospital - I should increase my odds greatly of suffering from a hospital induced problem in case I have a very rare problem that would necessitate being in a hospital? See - I can't get behind that line of thinking.
post #234 of 246
Quote:
Originally Posted by mytwogirls View Post
I have not read all the responses, but I cried when I read your story. I too had placenta accreta after the birth of my first daughter. A D&C stopped the bleeding, but immediately after the birth of my second daughter, I almost bled to death (and to those who say OBs love to quote patients could bleed to death in five minutes, well let me tell you as an RN, YES, I did almost did bleed to death in under 10 minutes, they COULD NOT stop the bleeding) and I had to have an emergency hysterectomy. I TOTALLY agree with you! 100 percent about the birth in a hospital! Thank you for writing this! It is rare to have placenta accreta, but when it does occur, it can be deadly and I am glad you trusted yourself and wish you the best. Thanks again for writing this mama. You are a brave woman!
OMGoodness, what a terrifying experience! Thank heavens you're okay and lived to tell about it.

But I just want to say that I never said a woman can't bleed out in five minutes. It definitely does happen. My point was that OBs use this line as some sort of excuse for why no one should homebirth...when in reality, it happens so rarely, and when it does, there's not a whole hell of a lot that can be done. I'm very grateful that you had competent surgeons on hand and that you survived....but if I had been in your shoes I would be dead, because it took the ER staff HOURS just to figure out where my bleeding was coming from, let alone get me a transfusion and take me to the OR.

Again, thank you for telling us your story.
post #235 of 246
Yes, my OB is wonderful and very skilled.
ColoradoMama: I think every woman is different when it comes to feeling comfortable in birthing in general. I worked as L&D RN for over three years and now for my OB /GYN and through this I personally feel more comfortable birthing in a hospital. That is just ME, I know MANY MANY moms do not feel comfortable in a hospital. I am sorry so many of you have had problems and issues with hospital births. Despite my traumas I can honestly say my stay at the hospital was great. From the staff, to the OB to the nurses, I have nothing bad to say. I know, I know, many have had awful and down right terrible experiences. I would never, never, be comfortable birthing at home, maybe I am too chicken. Looking back, I am so glad I did not decide to birth at home because I would not be alive typing this reply
post #236 of 246
Quote:
Originally Posted by honeybee View Post
So you planned a hb, felt intuitively that something was wrong early on, and went to the hospital where you needed to be. Thank you for reaffirming my decision to hb. I truly believe that if there is a real need for me to be at the hospital, then that is where I will end up.
:
At least two of us are aware of that, maybe more. It, also, reaffirmed my confidence in home birth and in mother's intuition.
post #237 of 246
Quote:
Originally Posted by mytwogirls View Post
Yes, my OB is wonderful and very skilled.
ColoradoMama: I think every woman is different when it comes to feeling comfortable in birthing in general. I worked as L&D RN for over three years and now for my OB /GYN and through this I personally feel more comfortable birthing in a hospital. That is just ME, I know MANY MANY moms do not feel comfortable in a hospital. I am sorry so many of you have had problems and issues with hospital births. Despite my traumas I can honestly say my stay at the hospital was great. From the staff, to the OB to the nurses, I have nothing bad to say. I know, I know, many have had awful and down right terrible experiences. I would never, never, be comfortable birthing at home, maybe I am too chicken. Looking back, I am so glad I did not decide to birth at home because I would not be alive typing this reply
I'm a firm believer that women should birth where they feel comfortable, and for some women that is in a hospital. I really wish hospitals, in general, were the kind of places where women could feel comfortable birthing there if they wished. I am also a firm believer in listening to our intuition and bodies. The OP listened to her intuition and I believed it saved her life. I've listened to my body and intuition during my births, and I believe it saved at the very least some complications and possibly interventions (when I birthed at a hospital). We, as a society, need to learn to trust in ourselves as much as we trust in the medical profession.
post #238 of 246
Quote:
Originally Posted by ColoradoMama View Post
We, as a society, need to learn to trust in ourselves as much as we trust in the medical profession.
Yep, you hit the nail on the head. I think we should do that and now this is MY opinion but I think the "best" birth is a birth in which the mom and baby are both healthy and happy about the experience whether it is in a hospital or at home. For me it was surrounded by nurses I trusted and my OB whom I trust and rely on. I am just so thankful I was in a hospital when I gave birth looking back on my situation though.
post #239 of 246
Quote:
Originally Posted by mytwogirls View Post
I would never, never, be comfortable birthing at home, maybe I am too chicken.
Got nowt to do with being chicken, its about comfort levels. Some women just aren't COMFORTABLE (ooops, almost wrote comfartable) birthing at home, they prefer the comforts of a hospital. For me, what other women find to be a comfort in hospital ie Obs, machines etc is something that is so alien and cold to me that personally, it makes me uncomfortable, but then, I despise hospitals anyway, I would be much happier if I could just have an operating team come and sort me out at home for whatever ailments I have (and considering NHS hospital food, I would probably do a whole lot better).

So, if you are too chicken to birth at home, then I am too chicken to birth in hospital lol.

Its all about choice and comfort, ALL women should have the CHOICE to birth in an environment that they are most COMFORTABLE in.

I could bang on about how great home births are for years, but if the person I am talking to simply isn't comfortable with that idea then I expect it would be a waste of energy and air. I will always mention how great a home birth is BUT that is only so that a women might open her mind to it if she hadn't thought of it as a possibility before.

When it comes down to it, I am a breastfeeding advocate and a natural childbirth advocate but I am also very much into choice.
post #240 of 246
Fear and reliance on "experts" has allowed women to lose touch w/their intuition in pregnancy and cb - jmo. There's a place for experts and this thread has discussed them thoroughly But, in general, that wildfire of fear that has been breeding in the last 150 yrs. is engulfing women's idea that a healthy, uncomplicated, preg./birth can actually exist (particularly w/o experts, extensive testing, technology, interventions). Also, we have almost no touchstone in our society right now for women to become familiar with the natural process. Just look at the boards - ?'s about bleeding, cramping, baby's position, and just plain old fear that "I can't do this" or "Is this normal?". We come to the boards and run to the hcp b/c we can't go across the street and ask another mama or we've never seen a natural birth or, maybe, we've never even been around a newborn. And by the time you factor in $$ that is being made at our preg./birthing expense - oh, it's tough to go up against that.

Fortunately, for the OP her instincts rang loud and clear. That's encouraging to me. I have no fear of birthing at home but, in the event I need to be w/the "experts", I hope my inner self finds a way to communicate as well as hers did It's so ironic that the OPs story unintentionally provides proof (if you will) that hbing is safe and women know more about where they need to give birth than anyone (including ourselves) gives us credit for.
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