Pitocin makes it hurt worse? - Page 2 - Mothering Forums
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Birth and Beyond > Pitocin makes it hurt worse?
April422's Avatar April422 11:30 PM 02-11-2009
I've given birth three times, each time induced with pit, the last time being a true necessity.

The last birth is the only birth I didn't have any form of pain medicaiton with, and to be frank it really wasn't that bad at all.

Did it hurt, sure. Was it unbearable, not by far, in fact i'd do it again tomorrow without hesitation.

I think pit is way over used, I agree with all the research on risk, etc.

But I think that pit can be used and used with compassion and mimic a more natural flowing labor. It's just that not many hospitals/providers WANT to use it that way. Blasting the baby out is by far the preferred method.

All that said I think we do a dis-service to women to tell them it's just flat out unbearable, etc. We should be teaching women that when pit is needed, key word there, TRULY NEEDED, that it can be done in a way that is easier on the body and thus the woman. Let's face it, once you start pit you've left the intervention station and we need to be helping women minimize further interventions not tell them to go for more (epidural) because it'll be unbearable.

My goal with my last birth was to avoid a cesarean at ALL costs. No AROM, minimal exams, pit started at 2 and upped very slowly and by small increments over a longer period of time than usual. And you know what, it worked. No AROM, no meds other than the pitocin, a nice, otherwise normal, easy vaginal birth was achieved.

I'm no hero, I'm no superwoman, and in fact I'm a whimp that jumps for the motrin and takes 800mg at a time for headaches, period cramps, etc. I HATE PAIN. But the discomfort I had with my last birth was totally bearable, and I felt a great sense of achievement and accomplishment by negotiating my way throgh labor with minimal intervention.

onelilguysmommy's Avatar onelilguysmommy 01:46 AM 02-18-2009
i was induced with my first. the only thing bad about it waas that they wouldnt leave me alone. that made whatever contractions worse when i was arguing but that happened with my completely natural birth as well, arguing with my little brother about yanking on my son and atuff (he was ummm..9. yeah not wanting to listen lol)
i was induced from no contractions at all, but almost 2cm dilated at almost 43 weeks.
with my first, i kept telling them to leave me alone (they set up an epi when i was in the bathroom after my repeated sending away everyone.) that my pain wasnt bad, the worst contractions were about a 4 until the last hour or so, and with the contraction monitor in, that hurt, too. felt like it was trying to stab through my uterus, but that has nothing to do with actual contraction pain, kwim?
and i was on the highest dose for over 8 hours....ive said it before, but id much rather be in labor, even induced if its just like that for me, than have bad tooth pain. really.

:
purplemoon's Avatar purplemoon 02:32 AM 02-18-2009
The pitocin was harder (had both without pain relief) than the regular birth.

For me, it was because the contractions were consistently strong, and on top of each other.

In fact, I became so sad in my second birth when I was feeling like it was starting to hurt really bad but thought I had many hours to go because I actually got breaks (about 2 minutes apart compared to no breaks with pitocin). Suprise when the baby was born about 20 minutes later.

I vowed to never touch that stuff again with a ten foot pole. Ick.
purplemoon's Avatar purplemoon 02:36 AM 02-18-2009
April- I think you are right. However, most Ob's are trying to shoot the baby out. My pit was turned up VERY high with AROM. Anyway, the baby needed to come out but it was done in a way that was cruel IMO.

I am going to take that knowledge with me.

If I had known of a better way and been adament, I would have been.

I mistakenly thought my OB wasn't into hurting his patients (trust me, I think he hates women and I ran far away with my second, used a midwife).
thepeach80's Avatar thepeach80 03:08 AM 02-18-2009
I think it's just doing to depend on the person. It hurt no more to be on pit w/ my last 2 babies than it did the last few hours of Evan's labor. The only difference was I labored for 12 hrs total w/ Evan and only 3.5 hrs w/ Ilana (only the last 1.5 hrs hurt) and then 2 hrs this time w/ Olivia. It hurt no matter what IMO and the natural ctxs I had w/ Evan were right on top of each other too, there was little to no break till I got my epidural. It actually worked w/ him, not so much the other times. Yes, if you're labor is taking a long time on the pit, it's probably going to be worse b/c you're not going to get that build up of labor you genearlly get when going spontaneously. Thankfully I went in at 4 and almost 5 cm and it took no time to get them out.
dylan1984's Avatar dylan1984 07:03 PM 02-19-2009
I am encouraged hearing that pit births can be so much different than natural. My first/only was inuced with pit. I had spent 9 long months reading and planning for a natural birth at the hospital. Ha! Boy was I wrong. I was only a week overdue and stupidly let the OB talk me into induction. I went in at 6am and by 10am was in the worst pain of my life.

I have a conspiracy theory that they wanted to put any thought of natural birth out of my head b/c my husband swears he saw them double the rate of the IV drip shortly after they started it and as I was beginning to contract. Maybe that is routine...whatever. I just know that by 10am I was in a fog of complete misery. No sooner would a contraction end than I would collapse and another one would start right back up. Definitely no "wave" like pattern - unless we are talking hurricane. The nurses were in my ear saying how I was not even 2cm dilated and how the pain was going to keep me from dilating and this could go on forever - they were like mean little discouraging devils on my shoulder.

So around 11:30 I buckled and took whatever drugs they would give me. Which in the end maybe saved me from a c section, who knows. The epidural took all the pain away and I pleasantly chatted away until 4pm when I started pushing. CONVENIENTLY my OBs office hours ended at 4pm so he came and I delivered at 4:20pm and he was able to go home to a nice dinner with his family. The convenience of it for them is the other element of my conspiracy theory.

In the end I tore horribly b/c I was pushing with all my heart, not feeling anything, waiting for them to tell me to slow down, when my son popped out into the world. I am now pregnant with #2, and am seriously contemplating homebirth, I just don't want to feel like such a victim the next time around.
theboodges's Avatar theboodges 06:48 PM 02-20-2009
My understanding is that a big difference is that you are just adding one piece of a complex hormonal process. So you don't have the natural highs produced in non induced labor.

I had pit twice. My experience is not as bad as most. I wouldn't hesitate to use it again if I had a medical reason to do it. With that said, WOW is natural labor and delivery SOOOO much better!

My first time was severe pre-e, I was on mag sulfate, really sick, and only 34wks. My OB encouraged an epidural asap once I felt contractions, because we needed labor to go quickly. My body wasn't ready, although they had given me prostaglandins on my cervix the night before to help. Contractions hit hard and fast, I was panicked by 3cm and got the epidural, I puked, couldn't breathe even with the epidural near the end, and by transition the monitor showed a flat line across the top with occaisional points down a bit - so one giant contraction basically! DS was born in 2.5hrs.

My second time I was full term, but PIH. I had been having increasing contractions, and was already at 4cm for the week prior to inducing. My OB just barely gave me pit to get things going, labor took off and DD was born 1.5hrs later. However, the contractions were not bad at all! I had breaks between them, and was shocked when I reached 8cm and they were still not painful. I think they were actually gentler contactions than my last labor, which was natural.

My third labor was intervention free, 3.25hrs from when we realized it was labor to birth. But it was a lot nicer! I felt more of a high in between contractions too, which I remember noticing at the time and enjoying! It seemed to help me get through contractions, because I knew in a few moments I would feel great again. I definitely did not have that with my pit induced labors at all!

HTH!
mikayla's mama's Avatar mikayla's mama 01:56 AM 02-21-2009
My baby was wedged incorrectly in the birth canal because of the horribly strong contractions, which obviously caused a cascading effect of problems for both of us.
texasnurse3's Avatar texasnurse3 08:21 PM 02-21-2009
When you're laboring naturally, there is a gradual build-up, peak, and gradual taper to each contraction. A pitocin labor doesn't allow for that. The contractions are just peak, so you're pretty much slammed with each contraction without any chance to get ready for it.
Hesperia's Avatar Hesperia 12:40 PM 02-22-2009
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ahappymel View Post
Being on Pit felt like being in the teeth of a dragon....natural birth was like being on the back of a dragon : ) It was intense but I was still in control.
You are rad!
_betsy_'s Avatar _betsy_ 01:11 PM 02-22-2009
My first was Pitocin induced. It was extrmely intense from start to finish, and very very fast. No breaks between intense contractions, i went from walking arounf at 100% and 4 cms without ever feeling a contraction to essentially transition for over an hour then pushing for 30 minutes with no urge to push. It was hell, but it was over quickly, baby was born 1 hour and 48 minutes after the "test dose" or pitocin drip was started.

With my second, natural, unmedicated birth, it was even faster. Went from walking around 100% and 4-5 cms without ever feeling a cx, not even a BH, to baby in 1 hour and 8 minutes. My water broke, contrax started and baby was here just as quickly the second time.

I describe both as violent on my body. No time to do any natural, normal building of intensity in cx and stretching. But apparently that's just how I birth, it wasn't all the fault of the Pitocin the first time around. Though my second birth was different, the cx were just as intense and there was still no breaks in between. 2nd time around was 2 pushes to get baby out.

Apparently I'm very sensitive to the hormone Oxytocin, whether synthetic (Pitocin) or natural.
ALLY1981's Avatar ALLY1981 07:04 PM 03-11-2011

Im looking to find the diference between Pitocin and Prostiaglandin for my baby due next month, any suggestions as to what I should use with less pain?


HappyMommy2's Avatar HappyMommy2 08:44 PM 03-11-2011

I have had one pit labor (ending in unnecessary c-section), and then two homebirths.  The pitocin labor was horribly painful, and far, FAR worse than my  intense 5 hour labors.  Let me give you an example, at 11:15 I was at 5 cm, at 12:20 I had my homebirth water baby in my arms.  That was a pretty painful hour, and it still wasn't ANYTHING like pit contractions.  On pitocin, I felt like the exorcist, and now I call it Devil Juice.


member234098's Avatar member234098 09:58 AM 03-12-2011

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mmaramba's Avatar mmaramba 07:27 PM 03-12-2011


Quote:
Originally Posted by ALLY1981 View Post

Im looking to find the diference between Pitocin and Prostiaglandin for my baby due next month, any suggestions as to what I should use with less pain?


 

First things first-- why are you being induced?


MsFortune 10:48 PM 03-12-2011

Quote:
Originally Posted by ALLY1981 View Post

Im looking to find the diference between Pitocin and Prostiaglandin for my baby due next month, any suggestions as to what I should use with less pain?


Not sure what you are asking.  I had an induction with pitocin and it was not bad - everything went smoothly.

 

I really don't advise doing it without an epidural though.  The pain is mind-boggling.  

 


katelove's Avatar katelove 01:35 AM 03-13-2011


Quote:
Originally Posted by ALLY1981 View Post

Im looking to find the diference between Pitocin and Prostiaglandin for my baby due next month, any suggestions as to what I should use with less pain?



Two different drugs with two different uses. Synthetic oxytocin (trade name Pitocin in the US) is used to stimulate contractions which, in turn, help to dilate the cervix and move the baby down as with natural contractions (theoretically).

 

Prostaglandins are used to ripen the cervix and make it more receptive to the actions of the oxytocin. While prostaglandins are enough to put some women into labour this is not their function and it certainly shouldn't be counted on. The general course of an induction is preparation of the cervix in some way (prostaglandins, foley catheter etc) followed by oxytocin.

 

If you do go into labour with just prostaglandins the progress of your labour will probably be more like a completely natural labour as you will have your own oxytocin and other hormones doing the work and you will have the benefit of endorphins and a slower build up etc etc.

 

As an aside, I found the rest of this thread very alarming. If people on synto are having no break between contractions then the dose is too high. I have managed many synto inductions. The goal is to have regular contractions 3 in 10 minutes, of moderate intensity (by palpation). When you achieve that you stop increasing the dose. If it exceeds that at any time you reduce the dose.


Smokering's Avatar Smokering 05:11 AM 03-13-2011

I had a prostoglandin induction at term (they also broke my waters). It certainly wasn't fun, but it doesn't sound like what the PPs are describing. There were breaks between contractions, they built up gradually, and transition was definitely worse than earlier labour. :p So I assume it's a somewhat gentler, more natural form of induction. It might not work if you're not already pretty close to giving birth, though, and I was threatened with Pitocin throughout labour if I didn't progress quickly enough - I had pre-eclampsia, so they wanted to get the baby out fairly quickly. I really wanted to avoid the drugs, though, and I'm glad I did!


Megan73's Avatar Megan73 02:31 PM 03-13-2011

Kate has laid it out well.

And I have to add that I didn't find the "insanely painful" part true for me. I've had a spontaneous vaginal birth and one induced with pitocin after my cervix was ripened with prostaglandins. Maybe it was because the pitocin was correctly administered, but I didn't find induced labor more painful - in both cases I found it manageable until transition.

That said, I absolutely agree spontaneous labor should be the norm and non-medically necessary inductions strongly discouraged, particularly for first timers.

There's good info about induction on Henci Goer's site, BTW, for example avoiding ARM, etc.


mrsberman's Avatar mrsberman 08:04 PM 03-16-2011


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by katelove View Post





Two different drugs with two different uses. Synthetic oxytocin (trade name Pitocin in the US) is used to stimulate contractions which, in turn, help to dilate the cervix and move the baby down as with natural contractions (theoretically).

 

Prostaglandins are used to ripen the cervix and make it more receptive to the actions of the oxytocin. While prostaglandins are enough to put some women into labour this is not their function and it certainly shouldn't be counted on. The general course of an induction is preparation of the cervix in some way (prostaglandins, foley catheter etc) followed by oxytocin.

 

If you do go into labour with just prostaglandins the progress of your labour will probably be more like a completely natural labour as you will have your own oxytocin and other hormones doing the work and you will have the benefit of endorphins and a slower build up etc etc.

 

As an aside, I found the rest of this thread very alarming. If people on synto are having no break between contractions then the dose is too high. I have managed many synto inductions. The goal is to have regular contractions 3 in 10 minutes, of moderate intensity (by palpation). When you achieve that you stop increasing the dose. If it exceeds that at any time you reduce the dose.


I'm sure there are goals and procedures, but mistakes are made. During my pit induced labor with DD, my contractions were too much, too fast and I finally got an epi. Shortly before pushing, I remember a nurse walking up to the machine saying "Oh, we should probably shut this off now, you're doing fine on your own." I strongly suspect they left the pitocin longer than it was needed to be left on for. Shoot, they forgot to drain my bladder for hours and as the epi was wearing off I complained about that pain over the pain of my contractions

 


Magali's Avatar Magali 05:25 PM 03-17-2011

My first was induced with pit.  My 2nd was natural.  My 2nd was a better experience.  The contractions would start and stop and I could deal with them.  They were incredibly painful, but they were by far easier to deal with  On pit they came in very intense constant waves that made me feel out of control and I was unable to withstand the pain and needed...yes needed... an epidural.


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