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#1 of 21 Old 02-23-2004, 10:44 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I had a straight forward birth, no meds or other interventions. My midwives were great and guided me pushing so that my perineum would stretch. They told me I had a small tear and that it was my choice to have it stitched or not; that it would heal on it's own.

I just took a look and it's bigger than I thought! I would say it's about a 1/2 inch long, completely superficial and runs straight back, if that makes any sense.

Should I have had this stitched? I chose not to, but now I think I should have.

Thanks,

Jen
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#2 of 21 Old 02-23-2004, 10:53 PM
 
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With both of my hb's I tore. The first was really bad so we went to the hospital to get stiched.

The second time my tear was about 1/2inch long and my mw said it would heal fine on its own without stiching. Well it healed though it concerened me the entire time. Now that its healed it didnt match up right so everytime I feel down there I can tell it really mismatched.

I am torn about the next if I should happen to tear whether or not to get stiched. I hate the the thought of having to go to a hospital after such a nice peaceful birth and end up with tear the heal matched or stay in the comfort of my own home and end up mis-matched.

Hmm thats what I will ask at my next appoinmnet is if she ever eneded up taking a class on stiching.
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#3 of 21 Old 02-23-2004, 10:59 PM
 
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I always feel like if it comes together well, it's not worth it to suture. When you make one stitch, you create two new wounds and it also is so much more irritating. The only time I stitch is when the sides do not come together well.

Kegel, kegel! Get the blood flowin down there and don't spread your legs too much. Let it heal on its own - even urine has incredible antiseptic properties and helps with the healing.

(I'm also not completely numb to this issue, as I had a third degree episiotomy that was improperly repaired that resulted in a pelvic floor reconstruction surgery at 16 months postpartum)
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#4 of 21 Old 02-23-2004, 11:56 PM
 
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'Hope it doesn't create cringing, but if there is NO muscle involvement, I love nexband to assist tissue in matching up nicely.
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#5 of 21 Old 02-24-2004, 12:15 AM
 
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paloma, What is nexband? Is it like medical superglue?
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#6 of 21 Old 02-24-2004, 12:21 AM
 
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Yeah, and it kicks for labia, too!
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#7 of 21 Old 02-24-2004, 12:28 AM
 
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I will keep that in mind if I should happen to tear next time. My first tear was really bad and I dont know if it could have been used for it but I am sure I could have used it for the second as it wasnt bad.
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#8 of 21 Old 02-24-2004, 12:33 AM
 
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Muscle tissue retracts when it tears, no nexband would make it look together, but still have the subcutaneous muscle separation.
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#9 of 21 Old 02-24-2004, 12:46 AM
 
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The same thing happened with me after my first. My midwife really wanted to sew me up, but I *hated* the idea of needles, so I said no. She told me to keep my legs together all the time, at all costs, until the tear came together.
I should have gotten the stitches. It took FOREVER to heal. Even now, my lips extend about an inch further into my perenium than they're supposed to But it's not painful, and sex was only painful the first few times we had it. I then birthed my 9lb.4oz. son, and since everything was done naturally, I didn't tear. Not even a skid mark!
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#10 of 21 Old 02-24-2004, 01:03 AM
 
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You know, I think the most surprising thing for women is learning - mostly postpartum - that their vulva and vagina will look different after birth - with or without tears, repairs, etc.

Some women feel like they've been let down if they're not told that things will look differently after birth. Most women do notice considerable changes in their vulvas and vaginas appearance after the birth of a baby.

I used glue a couple of times, but found that I could only use it in situations where I felt like it would be fine if left alone. Also, for me, and Paloma's experience may be different (please share if it is!), the glue crystallized and fell off within 12 hours, and it would need a second application. Most surgical grade glue is not made for mucus membranes (even Dermabond says this) and it's hard for the adhesive to stay for any length of time in such an environment.

In my three years of practice, I've sutured once.
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#11 of 21 Old 02-24-2004, 01:18 AM
 
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pamamidwife

Trust me I never expected my undercarraige to ever look the same afer birth but its pretty obvious by sight and for me feel that the tear just did not come together right, doesnt match up at all!

For my first when I got stiched it was a male Dr I am sure he gave me the "husband stitch" Cause I about died from pain when dh and I got together for the first time. It took quite a while till sex did not hurt. Dh said after the birth of our second I felt looser. Drated Drs! Why cant they leave well enough alone!
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#12 of 21 Old 02-24-2004, 01:26 AM
 
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I'm sorry, I didn't mean to imply that YOU did not have realistic expectations. I was just adding to the conversation, as an afterthought.
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#13 of 21 Old 02-24-2004, 01:26 AM
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I had a hb and 2 small tears and my mw stitched mine. I found that: 1: my sutures never hurt or irritated me, but the skid marks were really painful 2: I have a scar where the bigger one was. The tissue feels different in that one spot. So it could very well be that even if you had gotten sutured, you would still notice a difference in that area and that your postpartum healing would have been the same.
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#14 of 21 Old 02-24-2004, 11:23 AM - Thread Starter
 
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nak

I will ask the midwife I gues...it just creeps me out to be very honest. Maybe I'm not as comfortble with my body as I could be...I don't like things amiss with my vagina!

pam - thank you for your reassurance.

Jen
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#15 of 21 Old 02-24-2004, 01:12 PM
 
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I recently heard that seaweed can help hear tears quickly. I know a couple of women who've used it. If anyone is interested in this I will see if I can find the link to the article. I'm pretty sure I saved it...

Tracy, doula and Army wife and homeschooling mama to A and E
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#16 of 21 Old 02-24-2004, 02:04 PM
 
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Yeah, there's been alot of talk about nori sheets to help with tears. http://www.gentlebirth.org/archives/suturing.html

Truth is, though, if it's a small enough tear for seaweed, then it's fine to let it heal on it's own.

There's an old obstetrical saying that an OB recently reminded me "if you put two sides to a vagina in the forest, they will find each other", meaning that our bodies are meant to heal from most first degree tears.

For uncomplicated vaginal births, most women will expeirence nothing more than a first degree tear, especially if they're not doing forced, counted pushing. First degree tears, for the most part I believe, are totally going to heal beautifully on their own! It's an amazing, most forgiving part of our body.

Of course, compound presentations (baby's born with hands up by their heads) can complicate matters, too.

I just believe that suturing is way overdone and things are messed with too much. I've seen some incredible healing that has really affirmed to me how we need to trust our bodies to take care of themselves.

I think any messing with first degree tears by adding too many more properties to the mucosa will only add to the length of the healing.

There has been some incredible studies done in Europe where first degree tears are NOT sutured and the success and satisfaction rates are huge.

I like comfrey leaf sitz baths or infusions in the peri bottle to help speed tissue and cell regeneration.
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#17 of 21 Old 02-24-2004, 05:40 PM
 
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That's good info, Pam, thanks.

I had 4 small first degree tears with my first birth and I wish now I had known I had the option not to have them stitched. One of my stitches--well I don't know exactly what it did, but it started rubbing surrounding tissue and was very irritating. Additionally, I later discovered something akin to a large skin tag. I don't know if the stitching was poorly done or what the heck happened there. I think that may have been where the student mw stitched.

I don't hold it against her, though, cause, bless her, she was the only one who seemed to have any compassion when I needed some support!

edited to add: I made some homemade ice packs with pads and comfrey leaf infusion. I've got some comfrey left over, so I can make some to put in my peri bottle. Good idea!

Tracy, doula and Army wife and homeschooling mama to A and E
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#18 of 21 Old 02-24-2004, 05:51 PM
 
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skin tags are usually not related to suturing or not - they're more like an added bonus to birthing vaginally.
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#19 of 21 Old 02-24-2004, 06:11 PM
 
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OKAY! Who would have guessed that?? Not me! I guess I just assumed because it was in the same general location as where one of the stitches had been, but it's not like I had a map or anything. :LOL

I'm glad I WASN'T holding agains the mw all this time.

Tracy, doula and Army wife and homeschooling mama to A and E
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#20 of 21 Old 02-26-2004, 02:42 AM
 
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i just had my baby a week ago, and the dr said I had a very small tear at the bottom, and said it was so small it didnt need a stitch. I was barely sore, it never even stung while peeing, and now I feel fine down there. So I assume it healed fine. But after reading this, kinda worried me because I havent been keeping my legs together! LOL I've been sitting cross legged. So if it doesnt hurt, it must be healed together, right?
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#21 of 21 Old 02-26-2004, 08:45 AM
 
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I had a small tear and got two stitches. I don't know if it was from the stitches, or if the tear was bigger than I thought, but that area was very sore for six weeks or so. Riding in the car was not fun. With this baby, maybe I will just ask not to be stitched should I have another small tear.
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