How important is it to choose your own OB?
Originally I was assigned to a midwife at a hospital 45 minutes away from my house. When we found out it was twins, they made me switch to an OB, still 45 minutes away. I looked into it and was able to switch to a hospital (not part of my regular insurance, but they do allow it) 10 minutes away from me. I just went with the OB with the soonest appointment.
The midwife warned me that OBs in general weren't as personable and it would be a different experience, but it's really quite different. I'm not exactly unhappy with the OB because he seems competent and has delivered twins before, and was concerned on the outset that I'd been forced to his office because of the twins. At the same time, I am maybe a little disappointed and frustrated. He hasn't answered my questions about eating enough protein and when I called the office about my heart thudding wildly they referred me to see my regular doctor. I feel like he's been treating me like a singleton pregnancy, and I was anticipating a little more attention (maybe he's trying not to worry me?). My most recent appointment involved taking my weight and blood pressure, and looking at the heartbeats on the portable ultrasound machine. It was like a 15 minute appointment! I'll see him at every visit, but then when I deliver, I could be seen by one of 6 OBs, whoever is on-call. And I don't know how I feel about that.
How important is it to have a good connection with the OB if you are likely not to get them when you deliver?
I wonder if it's even possible with my insurance to get an OB who will be the one to deliver? Is it important for the babies to have that same person with all of the knowledge of your pregnancy there for the delivery?
How do you go about interviewing OBs and finding someone who is right for you?
Does anyone have GroupHealth insurance and have experience with this?
23 weeks 5 days now and I see the OB next Tuesday.
Side note I am hiring a doula and have some interviews next week. Maybe this will help?
It depends what your expectations are and how much energy you're willing to put into it. But generally, I'd say your caregiver is VERY important.
Treating you like a singleton pregnancy itself isn't necessarily bad - are your twins di-di? Everything going well? But if you don't have trust in your OB I'd keep looking.
I ditched my OBs for some of the same issues. I couldn't believe how little attention they paid to nutrition. And mine had strict guidelines about what THEY would be comfortable with - no interest in my preferences, which were kinda mocked. I actually got the line - the longer the birth plan the more certain the c/s.
My twin pregnancy was uncomplicated, and I started parallel care with a midwife at 28 weeks or so and had a great homebirth. I did stay with my OBs in case I needed to transfer, because (right or wrong) I felt if I ended up at the hospital I would have been willing to take the hospital ride for all that meant - birthing in the OR, surgery, etc.
Anyway, in your shoes, planning a hospital birth, I'd ask around town. Try your local twins club and see who if anyone liked their doc. Ask a couple nurses to see if there was a twin specialist, and who the nurses like for the kind of birth you prefer, Try your local LLL. Between a lot of different sources you might come up with a few good names. I'd trust this more than interviews, where in a calm setting thing look different than they do in a delivery room.
I am a believer that while twins are not high risk per se, you do want as experienced and skilled a provider as you can find.
A doula will help a lot I think. Treating you like it's a singleton pregnancy sound like a mostly positive thing IMHO. If there's nothing to suggest anything is wrong, why proceed as if you should expect the worst? Do your own research and ask questions if you think there is something your OB may not be paying enough attention to. Questions I'd ask an OB include whether they're comfortable with you giving birth without an epidural, and whether they have experience with vaginal delivery of twins when the second is breech. Personally I wouldn't be comfortable having no idea who was going to attend my birth - especially with a practice that large. 3 or 4 physicians in a practice would be doable in terms of having one appointment with each one to go over your birth plan near the end, but not ideal. The best way to find naturally minded or flexible OB's is to ask midwives in your area who are their back-up physicians.
I think it all depends on your birth preferences.
We switched from midwife care to OB care at 28 weeks (didn't find out that it was twins until 20wks). My OB is great, but the care is still different than what I received with the midwives.
We made 6 appointments with different OBs to find one that would work for us, because I really, really want to have a natural vaginal birth. I set up appointments and took a long list of questions with me.
I wouldn't feel comfortable not knowing who was going to deliver me, because different doctors have different comfort levels when dealing with twins. One might be on board with letting you try a vaginal birth and another might jump to an automatic c-section. Even if your OB has multiple doctors in their practice (mine has like 10), that doesn't mean that they won't agree to be there for your birth. You could always ask if it is possible to meet with the other doctors in the practice, so you are familiar with one another.
I also think that having a good connection with your OB is important because it is one less thing to worry about during labor/birth. I had an on-call doctor with DS and she was horrible. It made things much more stressful!
Definitely see if you can connect with your local mothers of multiples group to get some recommendations for OBs.
I also have group health and found out I'm pregnant with twins, so I am excited to see how this conversation unfolds. I don't useful information, as I'm several months behind you, but best of luck!
Thank you everyone.
The idea to talk to a twins group locally is a great idea. I've got a list of questions to ask my OB on Tuesday and if I'm not satisfied with the attention or answers, I'll pursue switching. I'm just not sure how or where to...because another OB at the same clinic will put me in the same situation (seeing the OB for all appointments, but not knowing who will be there at the birth).
I think what's creeping in here is that my anxiety level is increasing with every day the pregnancy progresses. I feel like I don't know enough about twin pregnancies or haven't gotten support from my OB to feel informed, but reading twin books and twin websites makes me even more anxious! I tend to be anxious so it's hard for me to determine what is my regular anxiety, what is pregnancy, and what is legitimate. So far everything has been very textbook about my pregnancy except a few (hopefully minor) things. One was that my OB didn't tell us that our 18 week ultrasound showed cysts on one of Baby B's kidneys, and we found out at the follow up ultrasound about them, and that the 2nd ultrasound was partly because of the cysts! It bothers me that the OB didn't tell us that, and of course I am worried about Baby B.
I know I can get a midwife and OB to team up, so maybe I will ask about that, too, as well as meeting the other OBs at the practice. Maybe in doing that, I'll feel more comfortable, or I can pick one of them to provide care up until the birth (but still feel better having met everyone).
mrsandmrs - congrats!! I can tell you for sure that with Group Health, I was able to request a referral from my primary care doctor to another hospital. If I had been better informed/prepared, I would have researched the OBs beforehand and chosen one for her to refer me to. Instead I had her switch me to a clinic near my house and made an appointment with the doctor soonest available. Besides figuring out the OB situation, I am very happy because I was having to travel 45 minutes for appointments and the future delivery (plus even longer in traffic!) and now my appointments and the birthing center is 10 minutes away. So if you don't like Group Health, you can get a referral to go elsewhere.