Does anyone know someone who suffered injury as a result of a scheduled c/s? - Mothering Forums
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VBAC > Does anyone know someone who suffered injury as a result of a scheduled c/s?
MomtoAsh30's Avatar MomtoAsh30 02:05 PM 12-05-2006
This is the flip side of the "Does anyone know someone who ruptured" thread. Does anyone know someone who had something bad happen (to either the mom or baby) during a scheduled c/s (including repeat c/s)? I don't, and I have several friends who have had them. That makes me more scared of VBAC then of repeat c/s, but I know that's probably an irrational fear. I know from reading the studies that more women die from elective repeat c/s than from VBAC, but the #s are so small that I've never actually heard of that happening IRL. I will say that I believe my child was sort of injured, in a way, by my scheduled c/s (for breech presentation) -- she developed very serious (possibly life-threatening) dairy and peanut allergies. There's no history of these allergies in my family, and a couple of studies have shown that babies born by c/s have an increased risk of developing these allergies and are less likely to grow out of them than babies not born by c/s.

onlyboys's Avatar onlyboys 02:10 PM 12-05-2006
I know two women who have scar tissue issues. One is having some bladder trouble, the other has scarring that has extended out of her uterus into her abdomen. This second woman is really having trouble. She had 4 cesarean births. The surgery she's scheduled for is to "clean up" the tissue.
annekevdbroek's Avatar annekevdbroek 03:05 PM 12-05-2006
This in an interesting question. I am planning/hoping for a VBAC in January. I think the difference in "outcome" for vbac vs. c/s is that the problems with vbac occur immediately during birth - a rupture (which is a rare event, and even more rarely can lead to infant/maternal dealth).

OTH, c/s problems may arise later, unless something really goes wrong right in the OR. So, infections, lingering pain (which I certainly experienced for a year+ after my c/s), scar problems, problems in subsequent pregnancies, etc. all show up much later. Additionally, the outcome of both procedures is much more focused on the infant's health, rather than on maternal health/healing.

I do know a former coworker who had a scheduled c/s for breech presentation (she was a family practice doctor and delivered babies herself). Anyhow, her wound failed to heal. I forget what the medical term is for this. She ended up with a huge band of messy scar tissue, like 6" wide across her belly and it took months and month to heal. She has to have plastic surgery on her stomach to make repairs.
Drummer's Wife's Avatar Drummer's Wife 03:13 PM 12-05-2006
I don't know anyone IRL and I have had 3 c-sections 1 of which was scheduled, the other 2 after laboring. I have had some pain on one side of my incision since my 2nd section (the planned one) but I don't know if this is normal or not. It's not unbearable but it's there and gets worse at times like pregnancy.

But it does seem like there are so many more chances for something to go wrong, infection, uncontrollable bleeding, bad reaction to anesthesia, bladder problems (they usually move it and then reattach it), scar tissue, infertility issues, hernia, torn large blood vessel, etc, etc and those are just some dangers to the mother.

And the risks go up the more c-sections you have so I think anyone given a chance to vbac the first time should most definitly go for it.
oregonbound's Avatar oregonbound 03:34 PM 12-05-2006
My incision opened up after surgery and the same thing happened to two of my friends who had c-sections, which I guess is not a permanent injury since it eventually closes up on its own (and it only affected the skin tissue) but it's awfully gross and annoying. Online I've read about women needing blood tranfusions and one woman having a hysterectomy due to placenta accretia (her second section) but I don't know anyone that's happened to in real life. Honestly, though, the chances of something bad happening either way did not play a huge part in my decision because in either event they are really rare. My feeling was the VBAC was the better option because if I had a c-section, even in the best possible situation, I was still looking at having a hard time getting around and not being able to cuddle with my older daughter (who is very active and loves to jump on me) for at least 2 weeks, compared to feeling pretty much back to normal a couple days after my vaginal birth, plus being able to cuddle immediately with the new baby and not deal with hours of "routine observation" in the nursery.

Storm Bride's Avatar Storm Bride 03:55 PM 12-05-2006
I guess it depends on what you consider to be an injury. After my second (scheduled, no labour) section, I had incision pain for 7 or 8 months, but I did eventually heal up completely from that. After my third one, also scheduled, but I did manage to have some labour first (baby was much happier/healthier than the previous one!), I've got something that I assume is nerve damage. I can't feel my bladder at 16 months pp, and have no feeling from my navel down to my scar on the left side. At this point, I think this is permanent. The doctors probably wouldn't consider it an injury, but I do. (I've come close to wetting myself on numerous occasions, as I need to consciously remind myself to use the bathroom, and I often forget with two small kids in the house. At some point, I do begin to feel the urge, but it's when my bladder is insanely full, and I actually think it's pressure on some other tissues/organ that's causing it. I can't really say, as I still feel like I came out of OR with someone else's pelvis...the "new normal" isn't normal yet.)
ndakkitten's Avatar ndakkitten 04:19 PM 12-05-2006
I know someone who had complications as a result of a c/s. One of husband's paramedic co-workers had a c/s with her first, I believe it was for "failure to progress". As far as I know, she recovered fine from that c/s. She attempted a VBAC with this pregnancy and ended up with an emergency c/s due to placental abruption and a bladder tear that occurred when she was pushing.

Turns out some of her scar tissue had adhered to her bladder, causing the tear. Her OB told her any future children will have to be born via c/s because her bladder will most likely tear again (He had to do the bladder repair as the hospital's on-call urologist was out of town...that's another story.) She had to have a catheter for over a week and was in the hospital for 5 days I think.

She did recover well, but I think that was due to her sheer stubborness. Amazingly, she is back at work only 7 weeks post surgery. So even though she had fairly good recoveries both times, she still experienced serious problems as a result.
Blucactus's Avatar Blucactus 04:38 PM 12-05-2006
Myself. Not for a scheduled C, but one I consented to under pressure of 24 hr labor, posterior baby, FTP past 7cm.
I got an infection of my incision, which threw me into a sick fever. Days later I started hemorraging. I'm quite sure they left a peice of placenta when they did the C, as the thing that came out of me couldn't really have been anything else. I hemorraged again, at the ER after running a high fever for a week unable to take care of my baby. I had a hemotoma of the uterus, I went back in the hospital, had to have two units of blood, endless tests, needle sticks & IVs, couldn't take care of my baby for weeks, and couldn't even BF for ten days (pumped and DS went back like a champ) bc of the posionous meds they gave me to clear up their mistake.
Not cool, doctor evil. Not cool.
grypx831's Avatar grypx831 04:51 PM 12-05-2006
My incision opened in a place - it's still open but healing. Not sure if it's an "injury" but like someone else said, it's gross and annoying. The doctors took the staples out too early.
channelofpeace's Avatar channelofpeace 05:54 PM 12-05-2006
During my first section, i had scar pain for six+ months

During my second pregnancy, i had terrible scar pain for like a week during the last month (i believe it was adhesions releasing). It was terrible.
Ammaarah's Avatar Ammaarah 05:56 PM 12-05-2006
I know a woman who needed a hysterectomy during a repeat cesarean. It was her 4th child but I'm not sure if it was her 4th cesarean.

I had an UNplanned cesarean and had a major wound issue...I had a huge fluid buildup behind my incision and it just poured out everywhere a week after my daughter's birth. They reopened the incision and we had to learn how to pack it with gauze twice daily for almost three months. That alone was far more traumatizing than the c-section, which was no walk in the park either.
ericswifey27's Avatar ericswifey27 11:31 PM 12-05-2006
Does emotional injury count?
roomformore's Avatar roomformore 11:57 PM 12-05-2006
Me. Migraines. Horrid, horrid migraines.:
MommytoTwo's Avatar MommytoTwo 11:11 AM 12-06-2006
I know a woman who needed a hysterectomy during a repeat cesarean

What a nightmare.

Other than incision pain that has lasted for years, and emotional pain as well, I cant say I had an injury. I did have my incision open up a bit a week or so after my first baby.
I have recently read online a few horrifying stories of the uterine artery being cut and the mother having massive hemorrhage. I also have read many stories of the bladder being cut accidentally.
Swandira's Avatar Swandira 12:20 PM 12-06-2006
I know a lady who had some internal organs sliced up during an emergency c/s, and seven years later she still has to take strong pain meds to deal with it. Apparently she's going to be in pain for the rest of her life as a result.

I didn't have any problems with my c/s (other than serious disappointment!), but I had a VBAC with my second baby anyway because I just really wanted to.

Mama to Thales, 12/9/02, and Lydia, 2/26/06
rainbowmoon's Avatar rainbowmoon 12:28 PM 12-06-2006
I had an unplanned c/s with my first due to positioning. within 5 days I became sicker and sicker until finally I had a gallbladder attack and was rushed to the hospital. I also needed 2 blood transfusions (which I initially had a reaction to the first blood they gave me : ) and also I had pancreatitis. it took me at least 5 months to not feel nauseated and I lost over 60 lbs (I had gained a TON when pg thankfully or I would have been in trouble!)
Mama2E&O's Avatar Mama2E&O 01:59 PM 12-06-2006
During my first c/s~ which was scheduled due to a breech presentation~ I lost a lot of blood: they could not stop the bleeding for a while. I was terribly weak and anemic and sick for a long while afterward.
The anesthesia caused my heart to do odd things and for a little while afterward I had to undergo testing to make certain I did not have permanent heart damage.
I was "out of it" during the whole thing due to anesthesia, and I can barely remember my own baby's birth.
I had terrible migraine headaches for days afterward due to the spinal.
I was in such terrible pain and my recovery took so long- I could not enjoy my baby as much as I'd have wanted to. Everything had to be done for me. I couldn't even change her diaper myself until she was a week old.
I will never forget how awful I felt afterward. I would never choose this option again.
Also, my nephew's ankle was cut deeply during his cesarean birth.
organicmommy's Avatar organicmommy 03:50 PM 12-06-2006
A very good friend of mine had an emergency section with her first due to undiagnosised previa that led to her almost bleeding out. They did a horrible job. Her 2 section was uneventful, but her 3rd pregnancy was terrible. She ended up with an early section due to the fact that the baby was not growing because the placenta was on too much scare tissue and in the end she had her tubes tied that day and lost her baby 6 months later due to sepsis. It all could have been avoided had the first section been done properly and not botched but that was another story!
the_lissa's Avatar the_lissa 03:51 PM 12-06-2006
I know someone who spent a month in icu and almost died because the dr nicked her iliac artery.
wombat's Avatar wombat 06:03 PM 12-06-2006
This left no permanent injury (well some numbness) but it made my life living hell for the first month of my new baby's life.

Dr sewed a nerve into my fascia (sp?) or something like that. Basically whenever I tried to move post c/s, the nerve pulled and it was EXCRUCIATING. I was on morphine something post c/s, when that wore off I was taking Percocet, Motrin & Tylenol around the clock, and I could still barely move. I kept complaining I hurt, and the stupid Drs/nurses kept telling me 'of course you hurt, you just had labor and then surgery'. After 2 weeks at home, I was taking the same amount of painkillers as post surgery and I still hurt. It would take me 15 mins to get out of bed, my dh had to help me. I couldn't lay down or stand up straight, I had to sit propped up. I was crying on the phone to the OB clinic and some guy/clerk told me I'd have to wait 3 days for an appt. as it obviously wasn't an urgent matter as I wasn't bleeding. I went to this OB clinic in person and same guy again told me I couldn't see a dr. I finally went to the General Practice Drs (in the same hospital) and got an appt. by saying I had right sided pain and not mentioning I was 2 w post c/s (well at least until I was in there). They had to admit me, (I was separated from my newborn), run heaps of tests including CAT scans to find out the problem.

My next birth was a planned HBAC which ended in a forceps delivery (shoulder dystocia) with a torn cervix and a 3rd degree tear. But even that wasn't as bad as that first c/s I had.
OnTheFence's Avatar OnTheFence 08:30 PM 12-06-2006
I've yet to meet anyone who suffered injury as a result from a scheduled csection. I have for emergency ones and those after long labors but not one that was "planned".

Wait, not sure if this is considered injury -- my SIL did have placenta and gauze left in her during her scheduled csection. She nearly bled to death and had to have it surgically removed two weeks later.

I actually had injury with my first but it was an emergency and my spinal failed. During my second csection I had repair work done. I had all the adhesions removed and I had a chunk of skin removed where the scarring was horrible (they ended up ripping me on one side and my scar was very lopsided). It was like a tummy tuck almost.

I am not sure if this has anything to do with my csections but I do have some bladder issues. No different than my friends though that have had multiple vaginal births though. I plan on having a hysterectomy when I finish breastfeeding and at that time I do plan to have a tummy tuck and my bladder put in a sling.

Some common things that can happen in a csection is knicking he bladder or baby. The bladder knicks tend to happen when the bladder is not completely drained and I've read more commonly happen during an unplanned csection. A baby can be knicked due to position in the uterus, fluid levels, placental position, or sloppy work by the surgeon. Bruising can also happen during any csection, especially if a baby is lodged in there. My son actually had to be born using a vacuum-- luckily he was not bruised and didnt even have a mark on his head.
northwoods1995's Avatar northwoods1995 08:53 PM 12-06-2006
Not a scheduled c/s but my bladder was cut through completely (NOT just a little nick).

I got to come home with a catheter and pee bag. It was a total PITA.

The c/s was a mess from start to finish. I healed pretty well physically. Emotionally--that's another story.
mimiharshe's Avatar mimiharshe 09:33 PM 12-07-2006
this thread is kind of depressing! i agree that emotionally scarred needs to count.

my first c/s...kinda scheduled last minute...went as well as a c/s could go actually. dr. respected all my wishes, did a good job on the surgery and i healed very fast.

second c/s...that's another story! 4 days labor at home w/midwife-transferred hospital. crappy doc. anesthesiologist messed up my spinal, so i had numbness on my upper left leg for about a year. my scar healed very slow and had pain/sensitivity there for a long time. i think a lot of that was due to emotions too. however, the scar was not anywhere near as good as my first.

i had a friend who had a c/s 10 yrs ago that went so horrible she never wanted more children and didn't have any more!

so sad....can't wait to VBA2C (when we conceive again! )
DocsNemesis's Avatar DocsNemesis 01:41 AM 12-09-2006
I guess I've been unlucky-most of the people I have known IRL who had cesareans had one complication or another. The closest people to me had serious mom had complications from the anesthesia, then had something else wierd going on and couldnt move or stay awake for more than 5 minutes for 3 weeks (it was almost like she had an infection but without a fever). She took almost a year to full recover...hers was an emergency cesarean after they tried to screw the internal monitor on her head and my sister moved up out of the birth canal, crushing her own cord and causing my mom to un-dialate. She was being induced too.
My friend had an elective cesarean with her twins at 30 weeks because apparently preemies cant handle labor :. Anyway, she was too sleepy the first 24 hours to even wake up, let alone see her kids. Then about a week after surgery she got a bad infection. Then she got another one at 3 weeks post. Her scar still hurts horribly. She is now about 7 months preggo and planning a repeat because her doctor wont allow VBACs and she doesnt want to switch. So I am the one going in with her-so I can hold the baby to her boob to nurse, lol.
I also know an 8 year old in real life with a big scar accross his back from where they accidentally cut him during the cesarean. Poor baby.
Wonder why I am scared of having a cesarean?
mimiharshe's Avatar mimiharshe 01:50 AM 12-09-2006
Originally Posted by DocsNemesis View Post
I also know an 8 year old in real life with a big scar accross his back from where they accidentally cut him during the cesarean. Poor baby.
Yikes! That is scary!
roseq's Avatar roseq 02:04 AM 12-09-2006
My step mother's bladder was nicked while doing her c/s (first "failure to progress") She was so out of it at the time she thought they were saying "Get the Neurologist" (instead of "urologist") and spent the first haze induced day of her daughter's life thinking that something was wrong with her baby.

I planned a HB but went in for a c/s due to breech, dialated to 9 cm and except for the emotional trauma, the surgery had no complications. I have to say I go back and forth between being totally at peace about trying for an HBAC someday and being terrified to ever get pregnant again!
wagaboodles's Avatar wagaboodles 09:19 PM 12-10-2006
I was hoping for a vbac but had to have a repeat c-section. I ended up scheduling it after lots of efforts to turn the baby failed and I wasn't able to sleep. So it was a scheduled c-section and I had a birth plan that they followed carefully (after lots of fights in the week leading up to delivery). As it turned out, labor began overnight before the c-section, so I felt comfortable in the timing.

A week into recovery, when things should be returning to nearly-normal, I started getting worse. I was having chills/fever and the pain in my incision was worse than it had initially been. I constantly wanted cold packs on my incision. I had no apetite (breastfeeding, so I still ate) and no energy and I felt just plain awful. I saw my doctor in passing because we were taking DS in for blood tests for jaundice and I tried to describe my symptoms to her. I called the OB nurses and told them that something wasn't right. The OB nurses told me to call back when my fever was higher. So when it finally was, I did.

They had me see a surgeon that (Friday) afternoon and he determined that I had an infection in my incision. He prescribed hot towels on my incision and some heavy-duty antibiotics. The hot towels were to allow my incision to open where it needed to to allow the infection to drain. If this opening happened on it's own I was supposed to call the OB nurse who was supposed to let the surgeon know. It started draining the next morning and I called but the nurse didn't notify the surgeon. I was scheduled to see the surgeon on Monday and was scolded when he learned that it had opened on it's own over the weekend and he hadn't been notified. I let him know that I did my part in telling the nurse.

For the following two weeks I saw the surgeon daily to pack the wound where the incision opened up. I was prescribed a second round of antibiotics. Thankfully (and amazingly) as soon as the packing began, the pain started declining.

Three weeks later (baby is 1 month old) the packing process is still going but I only had to see the surgeon every-other day this week (a friend/nurse has been packing me at home on the off days).

I guess infection like this is a risk with any surgery. The onset of infection in my experience was more painful than the initial surgery pain. It will probably be another week before this opening in my incision is fully healed.

I think this counts as "suffering injury as a result of a scheduled c/s."
the_lissa's Avatar the_lissa 02:05 AM 12-11-2006
Oh and I laos know someone who got a really bad infection if that counts.
ollineeba's Avatar ollineeba 02:33 AM 12-11-2006
I met someone who had a hysterectomy after she couldn't stop bleeding.. this was her second c/s (first planned one). I don't know her that well, just met her through an acquaintance.
ckhagen's Avatar ckhagen 02:51 AM 12-11-2006
My mom had to have a ton of blood transfusions after her section for me (first section of 5). She spent 14 days in the hospital and it took her 6 weeks to get back up and going because of the massive blood loss.

She has adhesion pain now, and her scar had to be revised and uterine scar tissues removed after the 4th section because it was such a disaster.
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