I'm Refusing All U/S.. - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 23 Old 05-06-2013, 10:49 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Has anyone else done this that might wanna share their hospital experience?
Doctors threatened legal action because "the baby has rights too"...and "we're refusing proper care"....
Im sure it was just scare tactics. These guys are pretty good at putting fear into young mothers hearts.
Any thoughts?
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#2 of 23 Old 05-06-2013, 10:56 AM
 
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They are bluffing. No way would I put up with that. They cannot do a thing to you! Can you go with a midwife instead?
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#3 of 23 Old 05-06-2013, 11:16 AM - Thread Starter
 
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We would like to. Though a few things are stopping us from going ahead.
1) late in pregnancy
2) running around-husband works
3) stress
A midwife can help a lot. We'll into it right away.
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#4 of 23 Old 05-06-2013, 11:17 AM
 
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My first reaction is no way. Nope. I would call their bluff and talk to the patient liaison immediately. Are you refusing doppler use as well, btw?  Why are they so worked up about your getting ultrasounds?


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#5 of 23 Old 05-06-2013, 12:17 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Yeah I am refusing Doppler. That's what they were trying to scare me into getting today. Because they claim without the scans they cannot know where and how the baby is..they "cannot provide proper care".
I guess they are going so hard because NO ONE in NYC refuses ultrasound. I have had no complications so far, thank God. I'm about 35 weeks. There really is no real medical reason for an ultrasound beside what he said today, "we cannot tell where the baby is"... or for "proper prenatal care"...
We did sign refusal forms today for the Doppler
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#6 of 23 Old 05-06-2013, 12:28 PM
 
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They can't tell where the baby is? That sounds like a lack of palpation skills.


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#7 of 23 Old 05-06-2013, 01:39 PM
 
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Have they been using a fetoscope to listen to the baby's heartbeat? I can see why they'd be anxious; so much of what they do is based on ultrasound technology. Breeches can surprise the most experienced providers and some women have body types that make it trickier to palpate position. That and not knowing where the placenta is would freak them right out. However, you have the right to refuse any and all tests and treatment; your being pregnant does not change that fact. They do have the right to "fire" you as their patient if they feel that your refusing this stuff makes it impossible for them to give proper care, however they have to give you a certain amount of time to find another provider, they can't just send you a letter and cancel your next visit. 

 

If I were you I would really try hard to find a practice that is less insistent on ultrasound. Your relationship with your docs sounds so adversarial and that is not what you want to be dealing with when you're about to have a baby!


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#8 of 23 Old 05-06-2013, 01:56 PM
 
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Have they been using a fetoscope to listen to the baby's heartbeat? I can see why they'd be anxious; so much of what they do is based on ultrasound technology. Breeches can surprise the most experienced providers and some women have body types that make it trickier to palpate position. That and not knowing where the placenta is would freak them right out. However, you have the right to refuse any and all tests and treatment; your being pregnant does not change that fact. They do have the right to "fire" you as their patient if they feel that your refusing this stuff makes it impossible for them to give proper care, however they have to give you a certain amount of time to find another provider, they can't just send you a letter and cancel your next visit. 

If I were you I would really try hard to find a practice that is less insistent on ultrasound. Your relationship with your docs sounds so adversarial and that is not what you want to be dealing with when you're about to have a baby!

I have to agree that being in such an adversarial situation is just asking for stress and a negative environment, but that there are legitimate reasons they are worried.

I think if you can try to educate yourself using belly mapping to feel for baby's position, and allow then use of a fetoscope, that might help.

If I was in your shoes, I would also consider SOME sort of scan, especially if this hospital was my only choice for birthing. A one-time Doppler or US has such a low risk of anything happening to the baby, while on-edge caregivers and an adversarial attitude during birth would be a perfect recipe for disaster to me. I would put feeling safe and cared for as my #1 priority.

But that's just me.

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#9 of 23 Old 05-06-2013, 02:10 PM
 
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By palpating, they can tell baby's position, as well as by asking where you're feeling kicks and hiccups. And with a fetoscope/pinnards, they can find the heartbeat. But in labor, when you're moving around and contracting (please tell me they're ok with active labor positions and movement, and aren't giving you a routine IV), I would suggest going with the Doppler for monitoring baby's heartbeat. It is really important to monitor how baby is responding to labor.

As for a midwife, I also think that's your best option. My understanding is that midwives are accustomed to women transferring to their care at late stages when the true birth attitudes of their carers start to come though more. If they have space, they'll happily take you to give yet another woman an empowering birth.
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#10 of 23 Old 05-06-2013, 02:12 PM
 
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I have to agree that being in such an adversarial situation is just asking for stress and a negative environment, but that there are legitimate reasons they are worried.

I think if you can try to educate yourself using belly mapping to feel for baby's position, and allow then use of a fetoscope, that might help.

If I was in your shoes, I would also consider SOME sort of scan, especially if this hospital was my only choice for birthing. A one-time Doppler or US has such a low risk of anything happening to the baby, while on-edge caregivers and an adversarial attitude during birth would be a perfect recipe for disaster to me. I would put feeling safe and cared for as my #1 priority.

But that's just me.

Yeah refusing all ultrasound is not a choice that I made or will probably ever make, and I routinely use dopplers and ultrasound in my practice. However I was assuming OP has her mind made up and while it's not what I would do, her care providers shouldn't be threatening her with legal action.


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#11 of 23 Old 05-06-2013, 02:16 PM
 
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Yeah refusing all ultrasound is not a choice that I made or will probably ever make, and I routinely use dopplers and ultrasound in my practice. However I was assuming OP has her mind made up and while it's not what I would do, her care providers shouldn't be threatening her with legal action.

True, legal action does seem extreme, but if that's the situation, all she can do is react. Either by leaving, acquiescing, or returning with her own legal threat. Personally, only the first two seem reasonable to me.

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#12 of 23 Old 05-06-2013, 10:43 PM
 
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I can understand where the threat of legal action gets to be ridiculous.  Back before the policies regarding the eye ointment for newborns were rewritten in Washington state, it was apparently the policy of many hospitals to report any parents who refused the ointment to CPS automatically.  Then, when CPS was interviewed, they stated that they took all those reports and essentially stuck them in a closet - they didn't consider them to be severe enough to be investigated, so they just ignored them.  Yet, the hospitals just kept submitting them. 

 

It's a bit of a different situation, but it has the same sort of "The law will make you do it!" feeling to it.  While I think health care professionals have the right to refuse care to non-compliant patients, taking legal action can be extreme in these types of situations where it's regarding prenatal care.

 

Just my thoughts regarding the whole 'take legal action' thing.


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#13 of 23 Old 05-07-2013, 05:25 AM
 
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The legal action threat is just that, a threat. It doesn't go anywhere from there because it can't. This doc is an idiot and he's just trying to scare his patient. I find that abhorrent. The fact is that there is no legal action he can take, and in his line of work, he ought to know that. There are very few instances in which a court would grant legal standing to an unborn child. I really can't think of anything outside maybe securing a double murder conviction if a pregnant woman were killed. The fact is this is why some states are pushing for "personhood" amendments to their constitutions in order to define life (and legal protections) at conception. But as far as I can recall none of those amendments have passed yet, and certainly not in NY. The OP is completely within her rights to refuse this procedure. Whether people like it or not, the law recognizes the authority of women over thier bodies (and unborn children) during pregnancy and whether it's an abortion or defining your own medical care, the choice is yours. The Washington state example is a little different because we're talking about a born child, so yes there are rights there, and whether we agree with the policy or not the hospital had the authority to file those reports though I'm glad the CPS focuses their time and energy on more important areas.

Sorry if I got a little off topic there but this doc sounds like an a$$ and if you kick him to the curb I would love to hear how it goes down.

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#14 of 23 Old 05-07-2013, 06:16 AM
 
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Are they using a fetoscope? At 35 weeks they can hear the baby very well with that and can also feel where baby is.

If you are not going to use doppler or sonos then you should be using someone who is highly skilled in the natural art of prego and most ob's just rely on tech. and have lost that art. In the hossy you will also have to fight as they usually do constant fetal monitoring but i have heard of women who ask to have it checked randomly throughout labor instead.


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#15 of 23 Old 05-07-2013, 06:17 AM
 
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I would not want to keep any doctor that threatened me though- as they can use that power against you and have on women and their children before. New York is not a very natural birth friendly state at all.


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#16 of 23 Old 05-07-2013, 06:18 AM
 
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I would really, really consider switching practices/providers. A doctor who would threaten you with legal action for refusing ultrasound of all things will not hesitate to bully you during labor and birth. You should not expect that your wishes will be respected in any way if you stay with this doctor. Yes, it is late in your pregnancy but you still have choices. This is the time to stand up for yourself and your baby and find a better match for the care you want. You don't want to look back in a few months and regret not taking action after seeing what kind of care provider you have.
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#17 of 23 Old 05-07-2013, 06:23 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks everyone, meeting with a midwife today. Home birth is a good possibility.
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#18 of 23 Old 05-07-2013, 11:19 AM
 
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homebirth sounds like the right choice for you... adversarial relationships with care providers is no good..... and midwives are equals/partners... whereas "drs" automatically have an "authority" position creating an adversarial relationship whether you like it or try to create it or not. 

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#19 of 23 Old 05-07-2013, 12:55 PM
 
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If you can't find a midwife this late, maybe a doula would help. They are the perfect advocates, and it sounds like that is exactly what you need. I'm sorry you can't go somewhere else. :( For medical staff to threaten you is inexcusable. There is nothing that you are required to do other than sign paperwork when you have a baby. In the end, they can't refuse you check in. The one tiny bit of sympathy I do have for them is that there is always a dark threat of people suing them for problems they did not cause. 

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#20 of 23 Old 05-07-2013, 02:35 PM
 
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In my situation, I am glad I got an ultrasound. I had placenta previa (low lying placenta) and would have had no idea except for the ultrasound information. I had ZERO symptoms, and ZERO risk factors. If I had not known, and attempted a natural birth like I had planned, it would have been dangerous for me and my baby. As the cervix dilated, the placenta would have detached too soon, meaning loss of blood, possibly hemorrhaging, not enough oxygen getting to the baby, etc. Too many scary things to think about. I just wanted to share my experience because an ultrasound could possibly make the difference between a planned c-section like I had (I was awake) and an emergency c-section (scary for everybody and you are not awake for the birth).
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#21 of 23 Old 05-08-2013, 06:02 AM
 
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I know a lot of women who didn't have ultrasounds. They were under the care of regular old hossy docs. I thought ultrasounds weren't routine for low risk women.

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#22 of 23 Old 05-08-2013, 10:39 AM
 
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I had a midwife birth in a hospital and while I did have an u/s at 18wks for anatomy scan (first time kiddo and I wanted to see!) I had nothing after that and no constant monitoring while in the hospital, so as long as you have someone who will advocate for you during the birth you should be ok.  I'd certainly not want to be stuck alone in a room with that doc of yours if there was already issues over an u/s, as I think he will take advantage of you in every way possible just to prove his point, be it wrong or right.  I also had a 3 page "birth plan" that was given to every nurse we came in contact with, it was on my chart, taped to the door AND the wall in the room just in case they missed it on the door ;-)  My midwife told me the wording was borderline pushy BUT she got to know me and DH well enough to know it was totally us and that we would stand our ground. Good luck!
 

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#23 of 23 Old 05-09-2013, 05:09 AM
 
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I know a lot of women who didn't have ultrasounds. They were under the care of regular old hossy docs. I thought ultrasounds weren't routine for low risk women.

yes sonos were not routine when i had my dd 13 years ago but now it is a usually they have you sign consent saying you understand risks yada yada but she is also declining all doppler use(listening to heartbeat) which they could do at 20+ weeks but are probably not skilled at


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