Stripping Membranes?? - Mothering Forums

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Old 02-13-2005, 02:49 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I have not done a lot of research on stripping membranes, but despite my best intentions, I am finding myself being really impatient the last few days. I am considering having my midwife strip my membranes on Monday. I will be doing my own research, of course, but I was hoping for some opinions from you ladies. Are there cons/risks I am unaware of? Do you think it is effective? Would you do it if you were me? Should I wait another week or so? (I am 38 weeks) etc. Just some general opinions. TIA for your help!
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Old 02-13-2005, 04:34 AM
 
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Wow. I would definitely NOT be considering this so early. Assuming there's no "real" reason you need this baby here soon, I'd just let him keep cooking! I understand being uncomfortable, impatient, wanting the baby to get here, but you've gotta let baby come when baby's ready, yk?

That sounds kinda harsh, and I truly don't mean it to be. It's just too early to be thinking about this, IMO. For me, I would not feel comfortable even considering this before my due "date" (which, BTW, how certain are you? Cause if you're off by, say, two weeks, you're talking about being 36 weeks instead of 38, yk?). But that's me, with my history of interventions going bad..... ymmv.


Again, don't mean this to sound so harsh, but no no no no no, lol!

Kinsey
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Old 02-13-2005, 09:18 AM
 
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Same here. Waaaay too soon to even consider this. IMO induction is only to considered when the baby is going to be better off outside than in, or there are genuine detrimental effects from your pregnancy on your health. Your baby may not decide they're ready to come for another 3 weeks so you could end up with the full cascade from this, plus a baby who has breathing difficulties and ends up in the NICU. Definitely not a safe option. Like your sig says, due in March!

If you're finding late pregnancy a problem, maybe some friends IRL can gather around to help keep your mind off it. A massage, some childcare so you can bathe or nap, a movie or dvd at home, special little trips around your local area, do something you've never done before, get a haircut, do some nesting. There are lots of cool things you could be doing that aren't risky to your health or that of your baby.

Hang in there. You want a properly cooked baby! Really! Let him put the finishing touches to himself so he's perfect when he meets you.
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Old 02-13-2005, 12:39 PM
 
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38 weeks is way too early to even consider this option IMO.

It seems that stripping the membranes as soon as baby has reached term has become a very common procedure. I actually was taking a pick at Baby Center's February/March Board to see what mainstream moms were up to, and most - if not all - of those ladies had already had, or were about to their membranes stripped

My best advice for you is to just try to think of other things and rest. The last month feels like the longest in your life when you're pregnant, but it gets much longer if you begin getting too excited when you reach 37 weeks. I should know because my shortest pregnancy was 41 weeks :LOL

I am 37wk4ds and I am just in soo much pain and so uncomfortable! I am also having a lot of painful contraction that don't lead anywhere, but I am trying to use these last weeks to get the last things ready and prepare my toddler for the big changes to come. It is hard not to wish the baby were already out when you're in so much pain though
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Old 02-13-2005, 04:14 PM
 
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.

Mightymoo - Mom to DD (6) and DS (4)
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Old 02-13-2005, 05:33 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the support guys. I am so anti-pitocin, anti-hospital, anti-intervention, but my patience is really trying to get the better of me. <sigh> I'm feeling much better today. Thank-you all for a reminder of what I really do already know. My daughter was born at 41 weeks and my last week I did blue cohash, castor oil, sex, etc . . . never had my membranes swept but was getting to that point, and my conclusion was that all of those things just made me miserable and I have sworn them off this pregnancy . . . I guess my pregnant mind is trying to convince me that sweeping membranes is different just because I've never done it. <chagrin> Doesn't make much sense does it? Thank you all again for your words of support and advice . . . sadly enough it's the same advice I would give anyone else who asked the same question. Why do we need our own thoughts thrown back at us once in a while? <shrug> Thanks again!
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Old 02-13-2005, 06:51 PM
 
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Just wanted to add that I had my membranes stripped at the end of my last pg, unbeknownst to me. The doctor was just down there doing her thing, and then came up and said, "I stripped your membranes while I was down there." A few days later, my water broke, but labor did not start despite my best efforts.

I ended up having pitocin, which led to a completely different birth than what I wanted and prepared for. Even though it was right on my due date, I'm convinced for several reasons that DS wasn't quite done cooking yet. After he was born I did some research, and found out that stripping membranes can lead to PROM. I refuse to do that again, and to make sure, I'm refusing to get checked at my visits, so that nobody will even have the chance to do it!

I'm 39 weeks, and I just cannot wait to not be pregnant anymore! But no one's touching my membranes!!

Just my .02
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Old 02-14-2005, 01:06 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Oh dear! No fun! I get so pissed of at doctors who strip without telling their patients . . .I have a heard a few stories of midwives doing it too. If you want to get your membranes stripped, fine (I obviously don't feel strongly against it . . .yet) but do not even think that you have the right to strip someone without their knowledge and informed consent!!! I can't believe all of the women who find out after the fact that they got stripped! It is my pet peeve. . . well, one of the many. Thanks for sharing your story! I was just reading about the connection between stripping and PROM. I am starting to think it is not a good idea even when I do reach my due date. I should just take my own advice and let nature do the picking and choosing.
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Old 02-14-2005, 01:41 AM
 
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OK, I will be the odd man out here. With #2, my parents were driving 800 miles to see me and meet the new baby. This trip had to be planned, couldn't be rescheduled. So when my due date was a week away, I asked my midwife what I could do that was gentle and would jump start things if they were ready. She said that a gentle membrane sweep might get things moving. I had already been doing cohosh, but it was just producing an irritable uterus. I had also been into L&D twice for false labor, so things were progressing, my cervix was ripe and I was already dilated to 2. She did a very gentle sweep, no pain at all. A few days later, the day after my folks got there, I went into labor. I can't guarantee that the sweep got things moving, but I was so grateful that she was willing. Baby was a very happy and healthy 8 lbs, my biggest baby yet.

Have not had it done again, and won't this time either, because I don't trust my caregivers as much as I did Carol. Just a little different perspective. And I do agree with the others that 38 weeks is too soon. If I had someone I trusted that much, I would still wait until 40 weeks.
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Old 02-14-2005, 09:53 PM
 
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I agree with what everyone else said, 38 weeks is too early to be thinking of inducing. I would not recommend it until at least 40 weeks and then, like before 40 weeks, it really ought only be done if there is medical indication anyway.

That said, I have heard that membrane stripping doesn't really work and it increases infection risk. There doesn't seem to be good reason for it. If your cervix isn't ready it isn't ready then no induction method is going to be very successful, and in the end will mean more pain and possibly more interventions for you in the long run. I wouldn't risk it. There is also a chance of it rupturing your membranes, I have heard of this happenning, and then if your body isn't ready to go into labor to begin with you are going to increase the chance of infection by having a prolonged broken water or you are going to have other induction methods done to you to push you into labor, pitocin, etc.

I wouldn't do it. No way.
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Old 02-15-2005, 04:16 PM
 
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My doctor did this at 39 weeks with very little warning and without explaining it. Even though I was happy with my doctor overall, I'm pretty pissed that she did that. It lead to very strong yet unproductive contractions and back pain so severe I had to miss my second to the last day of work. I ended up delivering dd on her due date. The other issue for me was that my parents were flying in and had not had the opportunity to see me pregnant and I was hoping they would make it before the birth so that they wouldn't miss out on that. If the doc. had had her way they would have missed seeing me pregnant. But she didn't give me the chance to explain any of this first.
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Old 02-15-2005, 05:32 PM
 
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I had my 2nd child at 38 weeks, and I would NEVER have considered having my membranes stripped at that time. Going into labor was a surprise.

I wouldn't do it with my 1st either. I think that my crappy MW did it anyway without my consent after labor kicked in at 41 weeks.
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