Stripping membranes/ breaking waters - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 12 Old 01-26-2012, 09:07 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Hey ladies. I have been exhausted. I have had three bouts of "false labor" or "practice contractions" or whatever. On top of those times, pretty much every night Im having less painful contractions, but still so painful I cant sleep, all night long. My schedule is so screwed up that Im sleeping from 6am- 1pm everyday because Ive been up all night having contractions. My kid is miserable, my husband is exhausted, and Im terrified that Im going to wind up going into labor with zero sleep, after being awake for 20 hours. Basically, I hate life right now. My entire existence is sitting around waiting for this baby and having "practice contractions"- for weeks now. My family is all about to get scattered (Dad has a conference in FL, mom has a conference in CA both the second week of feb, which will leave me with little to no help with DD). Basically, Im over it. Its miserable and it hurts and is extremely disappointing every time I have to call someone to come get DD, pack the whole car up, and get ready to go and it stops. Sunday is my due date.

So, when I went in for my appointment on Wednesday, my OB and I made a plan. She stripped my membranes (I was 4 cm dilated, 80% effaced) and if I dont go into labor by Sunday Im going to go in and have my water broken. She has assured me that there will be no time limit on how long I can labor after my waters have been broken as long as I dont get a fever and the baby's baseline heartrate is maintained at a reasonable rate (its been around 145 for weeks). At my dilation and effacement and with all the contractions I have been having she thinks that it will be extremely successful without any other interventions. I will have a birth pool, portable efm, and no/limited vaginal exams at the birth center. So, for the ladies who have had these augmentations before, I have a couple of questions:

How long did it take for you to go into labor after having your membranes stripped?
Does it hurt/ what did it feel like to have your water broken before labor?
How long did it take for you to start having contractions after your water was broken?


Thanks in advance!

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#2 of 12 Old 01-26-2012, 09:18 AM
 
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I've had my membranes stripped with each of my previous pregnancies. Here's my experiences:

 

(and I wanted to offer a huge hug, because I have been having a lot of practice labor to the point that I am going mad, but it isn't keeping me up as much as you at night and I am getting a little relief.. yet I'm still to the point of tears and ready to be done.... so I totally feel you grouphug.gif)

 

With DS1, my "midwife" stripped my membranes at 36 weeks. Not really sure why. Didn't ask her to, she just did while checking me. I was not dilated or effaced at all and it hurt like hell. I bled, it hurt, I cramped. I didn't have him until the 3 days before my EDD, and I was induced by her because she was going out of town and it was the day before Thanksgiving. Yeah. Wonderful. I was so uneducated.

 

DS2, natural planned birth-center birth with midwife. I went 11 days past my EDD. I went in with false labor on that 11th day, MW checked me and I was 1-2 cm, 80% effaced. She asked if she could strip my membranes and I said yes. It didn't hurt at all, just felt like she was checking me. I'm assuming because my cervix was more open, where with DS1, it was completely closed and not soft at all. I had him that night. 

 

My bag of waters have released naturally each time, so no insight there.

 

I begged my MW at the 39 week appt to strip my membranes just to try to nudge me in the right direction. I've had practice labor since mid January. My EDD is Feb 1st. I was 3-4cm, 90% effaced at that visit, and she said that if I didn't go in the next few days, that at my Feb 1st appt she will strip them for me. We're planning a home birth, so I never have to worry about packing/childcare-etc. So yeah big hug. I get more anxious, upset and annoyed with each passing day so I can totally feel where you're coming from. 


Jesse, mama to my three wonderful boys, our newest born at home late Jan 2012 luxlove.gif

 

 

 

 

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#3 of 12 Old 01-26-2012, 10:04 AM
 
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I feel for you about the practice contractions. I have been having them since about 30 weeks and they are not fun at all. Mine also like to come in clusters in the middle of the night-- definitely not conducive to a good night's sleep. I have heard some mamas drink a glass of red wine (just ONE, lol) to relax the uterus. Haven't tried this personally but I've heard it helps. 

I don't know much about having your bag ruptured, but my neighbor had her membranes stripped on her due date and still ended up going to 42.5 weeks! But I think it depends on how close your baby is to being ready anyway.... 

Good luck to you! Hope it happens soon and you can get some relief and get to meet your new little one! :)

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#4 of 12 Old 01-26-2012, 11:47 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Just as a little update, I had my membranes stripped yesterday at around 1:30 pm- 24 hours ago.It was a little uncomfortable, but just felt like a longer exam. I had a contraction while she was doing it and she said "Youre having a contraction now, and when you contract you are about 95% effaced". I didnt have many contractions last night, but I did have bloody show a couple of hours ago. I've been walking around with what feels like menstrual cramps today. Hopefully, things are on their way and we wont have to have waters broken. But, I am still interested in knowing what it feels like or knowing what others' experience with having waters broken was like.

Are the practice contractions you have had like BH, or are they painful? I started BH at around 24 weeks this time, but for the past three weeks Ive had painful contractions.

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#5 of 12 Old 01-26-2012, 01:47 PM
 
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I don't have experience with having my water broken either, but I did have practice contractions with DD, but only for 26 hours.  I can't imagine having them for days, so sorry to hear what you've been going through!  Mine were definitely painful and felt different than Braxton-Hicks.  they never got to the point of being very painful where I needed to really focus or breathe through them, but I only slept 3 hours each night for the 3 nights before DD was born. 

 

After several hours of practice contractions, my midwife stripped my membranes and DD was born shortly after.  I also had bloody show about 48 hours before dd was born and I had read that most women go into labor within 48 hours of having bloody show.  So it sounds hopeful that your baby will be here soon, I really hope so!!  Good luck :)


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#6 of 12 Old 01-26-2012, 03:32 PM
 
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I've had my water broken at 4CMs with both of my births, both ended in C-sections. Having the water broken isn't painful in any way, it just takes labor from dragging to serious REALLY fast. Contractions are more uncomfortable and everything just seems to speed up. With DD it exasperated the fact that she had a high heart rate and took it higher, so she was taken by emergency C-section. I won't have my water broken again based on my past experiences. Having your water broken isn't going to do anything except make things more painful, if your body isn't ready.

Having my membranes stripped never really helped me along either. I had it done twice with each kid. With DD the second membrane stripping helped my mucus plug work its way out though.

 

It sounds to me like your in early labor though, I would just hang in there, I bet you have a baby by the end of the weekend :)


Wife since 2004. Mommy to DS (2005) and DD (2008) and my hopefully VBA2C baby DD due Feb 2012!

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#7 of 12 Old 01-26-2012, 03:54 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaysmylilpunkin View Post

I've had my water broken at 4CMs with both of my births, both ended in C-sections. Having the water broken isn't painful in any way, it just takes labor from dragging to serious REALLY fast. Contractions are more uncomfortable and everything just seems to speed up. With DD it exasperated the fact that she had a high heart rate and took it higher, so she was taken by emergency C-section. I won't have my water broken again based on my past experiences. Having your water broken isn't going to do anything except make things more painful, if your body isn't ready.

Having my membranes stripped never really helped me along either. I had it done twice with each kid. With DD the second membrane stripping helped my mucus plug work its way out though.

 

It sounds to me like your in early labor though, I would just hang in there, I bet you have a baby by the end of the weekend :)


Hmmm.. I wonder if it is any different if you arent already in labor though. I am at 4 cm now, and having my water broken would be to start the contractions, instead of to speed them up. Last time, my water broke and I had no contractions for 6+ hours. I'm wondering if that could happen again. My plug was already gone before she stripped my membranes. Im hoping you are right though, and that this is early labor and Ill have my baby soon.

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#8 of 12 Old 01-26-2012, 03:56 PM
 
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I haven't had my membranes stripped before, I did have my water broken with my son, but I had tons of pitocin along with it, so that's different.  I did just want to say, I understand! hug2.gifLast night I was having seriously painful contractions 2-3 minutes apart, for 4 hours, finally decided maybe it was time to make the 2.5 hour drive to the VBAC friendly hospital, and by the time we got there the contractions had stopped...redface.gif My poor husband drove us all the way home and went to work with no sleep at all. guilty.gif I felt so bad! To top it all off, my mom who was watching DS "didn't have time to watch him" once I got home, so even though DS and I did take his normal 3 hour nap together, I was really hoping my mom would watch him so I could get some real sleep...eyesroll.gif Now I'm hoping I won't go into labor until we've all recovered.  It's so hard to know when it's the real deal or not.  Good luck to you!!joy.gif


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#9 of 12 Old 01-26-2012, 04:06 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by nannybutterfly View Post

I haven't had my membranes stripped before, I did have my water broken with my son, but I had tons of pitocin along with it, so that's different.  I did just want to say, I understand! hug2.gifLast night I was having seriously painful contractions 2-3 minutes apart, for 4 hours, finally decided maybe it was time to make the 2.5 hour drive to the VBAC friendly hospital, and by the time we got there the contractions had stopped...redface.gif My poor husband drove us all the way home and went to work with no sleep at all. guilty.gif I felt so bad! To top it all off, my mom who was watching DS "didn't have time to watch him" once I got home, so even though DS and I did take his normal 3 hour nap together, I was really hoping my mom would watch him so I could get some real sleep...eyesroll.gif Now I'm hoping I won't go into labor until we've all recovered.  It's so hard to know when it's the real deal or not.  Good luck to you!!joy.gif


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I cant believe how long of a drive that is. I was feeling sorry for myself and my 30 minute drive. Hope you get some sleep smile.gif

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Adaline love.gif (3/20/10), and Charlie brokenheart.gif (1/26/12- 4/10/12) and our identical  rainbow1284.gif  twins Callie and Wendy (01/04/13)

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#10 of 12 Old 01-27-2012, 06:59 AM
 
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I had my water broken to start labor with my youngest. I was nearly 43 weeks and 5 cm. It didn't hurt it just felt really weird, like I was wetting the bed. As soon as she was done, I got up and contractions started about 5 minutes later. My labor was short, only two hours from the first contraction to delivery. I guess it was pretty intense, I'm not sure, it was my first unmedicated delivery. It never got "unbearable" though...I loved my experience! I would do it again in a heartbeat if I had to.


Misti, mom to DS (12), DS (9), DD (3), and Mr. Man (October '10)!

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#11 of 12 Old 01-27-2012, 08:18 AM
 
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As an OB nurse, I've seen AROM working both ways...IF the baby is ready and labor was indeed imminent than I've seen it jumpstart labor.  I've also, more often, seen it do absolutely nothing and the mom end up with unnecessary interventions/augmentation in the form of pitocin and continuous fetal monitoring.  I'm surprised they said there is no "time limit" once the AROM is performed as most hospitals have a 24 hour limit before antibiotics and or the augmentation is started. It is really one of the interventions that needs to be weighed carefully. 

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#12 of 12 Old 01-27-2012, 08:54 AM
 
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I couldn't agree more with all of this. Think long and hard! The actual act of having your water broken doesn't feel like anything really, maybe a small release of pressure. But after everything thing will be more intense. If after your water broke last time, you didn't have contractions for 6+ hours that may be a risk again. Some women are lucky enough to birth the baby in the sac and from what I understand it makes the whole process less painful. And of course there is a higher risk of infection after ROM. Personally, I would try ANYTHING else first. Maybe get on a breast pump and see if that can get things going, although I hear that can be just as bad as getting pitocin. shrug.gif How desperate are you?
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1bighappyfamily View Post

As an OB nurse, I've seen AROM working both ways...IF the baby is ready and labor was indeed imminent than I've seen it jumpstart labor.  I've also, more often, seen it do absolutely nothing and the mom end up with unnecessary interventions/augmentation in the form of pitocin and continuous fetal monitoring.  I'm surprised they said there is no "time limit" once the AROM is performed as most hospitals have a 24 hour limit before antibiotics and or the augmentation is started. It is really one of the interventions that needs to be weighed carefully. 


 

 


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