episiotemy vs. none vs. tear - what's it like after the baby? - Page 2 - Mothering Forums

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#31 of 41 Old 03-26-2005, 12:44 PM
 
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If she opts to allow a doctor to do an episiotomy, she can assure herself of painful sex for a good long time. If she opts to not allow a doctor to have his hands anywhere near her vagina, and she doesn't do directed pushing on her back, her chance of tearing is very low and her chance of tearing into muscle (which an episiotomy always does) is almost nil. To me, this is a no-brainer.

As to whether the vagina will become permanently stretched with birth over an intact perineum -- that is a silly myth, and shame on her doctor for perpetuating it. But look, if she really believes it, why not at least wait until there is evidence of it before making surgical changes? There is no harm in waiting for that evidence, but there is certain harm in an episiotomy.

FWIW, I have given birth four times, and my vagina feels no different to me than it did before I ever gave birth.
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#32 of 41 Old 03-26-2005, 01:06 PM
 
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I didn't want an episiotomy but was forceably given one that tore me right open into the anus -- cut open like a chicken with a cleaver.

The resulting rip (that the episiotomy was supposedly going to prevent) was stitched badly....it had torn through a lot of nerve endings and slightly into a muscle. When it was sewn up, my sciatic nerve from my right leg was trapped in the scar tissue and a ligament on the left side of my back was also somehow affected (I'm not an anatomist, so I can't remember the details).

I was in excrutiating pain for months until I finally found a doctor who (a) acknowledged that I was obviously in severe pain and (b) figured out what it was and how to solve it.

I had surgery to correct it.

I still go to physical therapy. This happened three years ago.

Because of this, I deeply regret the whole experience and my husband has had a vasectomy.
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#33 of 41 Old 03-26-2005, 01:09 PM
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I had an episiotomy with a 7 lb. 5 oz. baby, and a slight tear with a 8 lb 6 oz. baby. The episiotomy was SO MUCH WORSE! OMG!! (And I tore additionally on top of the episiotomy.)

Also keep in mind, as others have said, that the WAY in which you give birth determines how much room the baby has to come out--giving birth on hands/knees, for example, allows for much more room.

"Our task is not to see the future, but to enable it."
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#34 of 41 Old 03-26-2005, 01:26 PM
 
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Guess I'm in the minority - I've had 4 episiotomies and had no issues w/ any of them. Recovery was quick, sex has been just fine, etc.

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#35 of 41 Old 03-27-2005, 07:46 PM
 
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i had 2nd degree tearing -internal and external - with an unmed hospital birth - 20 minutes of pushing, 8lb14oz baby, was sitting reclined, pulling my legs back (and having them pushed back by the ob and nurse). the ob had tried to do perineal stretching - i don't know what the heck she was doing but it hurt!! little did i know the stitching hurt even worse!!

the pain i was in for my recovery was manageable with lots of ibuprofen - i refused the offer of a percocet rx. but, it was painful to sit for about a month afterwards - and it especially interfered with getting bf'ing established since i couldn't sit and we took a while to master side-lying latching.

dh and i had sex once - at 7 weeks pp - it hurt some - not terribly. but my libido is shot still. i guess i'm also still a bit scared of pain...

oh yeah - fun fact - my OB said later - you tore just where i would have done an episiotomy! for all the bad things i could say about her, she did follow my birth plan!

Rosemary & Gary :
James 12/04 & Cecelia 4/07
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#36 of 41 Old 03-27-2005, 09:07 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blueviolet
If she opts to allow a doctor to do an episiotomy, she can assure herself of painful sex for a good long time.
I'm sorry this is just not true. I totally agree that not getting an epis means you at least give yourself the chance of not having an injury to your perinium and that a tear can be much less serious than even a basic epis but not every woman who has an epis has painful sex for a good long time. Several of us have posted to this thread alone and said that we had epis and did not have painful sex. On the other hand several of us had very drastic tears that did lead to long-term painful sex. It is one thing to say a tear is likely to heal better, more quickly etc but it is entirely different to guarantee that she will have a certain outcome when many women do not have that experience.
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#37 of 41 Old 03-27-2005, 09:09 PM
 
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I do want to add that I know just how the person who talked about pushing uphill felt. With #3 they had me flat on my back with my pelvis actually turned up to the ceiling. Here they are literally telling me to push my almost 10lb baby up towards the ceiling. Um yeah that's easy to do let's not use gravity at all.
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#38 of 41 Old 03-27-2005, 09:28 PM
 
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[QUOTE=Full Heart]Our bodies are designed to give birth. Our perineums are meant to strech to accomadate the head of a baby and then return to almost its same shape as before. Of course it wil never be virginal, but its pretty darn close. Just don't look at it too soon after birth Michelle/QUOTE]


:LOL I have to comment on this! LOL I have never had an episiotomy and my first baby was 10 pounds I am convinced that perineal tissue stays much more toned by not being cut... I gave birth to my last baby in Dec /03 and I did look at my perineum an hour after she was born and it looked NORMAL! no swelling.. no bruising no grazing.. just normal in fact I was amazed dd had just popped out of there! :LOL I have had sex as soon as 8 days after my babies are born.. I feel good so why not right? I also have a theory that Kegals while great are not a substitute for actual sex.. I think sex and actual orgasm are likely the absolute best toners! and when you think about this it really makes sense, I do not notice a difference in my sex life before babies and after 8 babies :LOL of course your mileage may vary.
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#39 of 41 Old 03-27-2005, 09:38 PM
 
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(((sohj)))

Erin, 33, salty southern mama, sitting by the sea with my DH35, DD10, DS4, &DD2!
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#40 of 41 Old 03-29-2005, 05:08 PM
 
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((((((Sohj))))))

When I was pregnant I found out two of my friends had episiotomies against their will (not wishes- against their will, literally). They/I liken this to sexual absue and thus when I looked for a midwife I made this a clear part of my birth plan. I had a tear that required a few stitches from my midwife. Honestly I was fine with it-- I don't think there's anything I could have done to prevent the tear, my midwife, support person and doula all did a wonderful job helping me stretch, I just think it was meant to be.

I took no pain relivers and was fine-- really, I know this sounds weird with stitches and all, but honestly I didn't have pain beyond the slight burn when peeing for 24 or so hours.

The only issue I had was that I had to really fight off the nurses (I had a CNM birth in a hospital) to examine the stitches. I think I may have screamed at one woman, honestly : but it felt very private.

Personally I would never chose an episiotomy for the reasons other women mentioned- tears heal faster and quicker and "preventative" epis are usually only good for the doctor. Plus, being a survivor, it would feel like too much of a violation of my body.....

I saw two midwives, at a hospital, and between them they did 2 epi's in the year before I saw them- both were requested by the mothers.
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#41 of 41 Old 03-29-2005, 05:49 PM
 
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I had an episiotemy...and it was hell.It hurt for months, I got bulky scarring and now, after more than 8 years, I can still feel it

never,ever, again!
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