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#1 of 49 Old 06-25-2007, 11:02 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Has anyone tried out a V2 supporter to help discomfort from a postpartum cystocele? I'm 5 weeks PP and have a grade 3 cystocele. It's very uncomfortable, especially by the afternoon, when the bulge tends to increase and really protrude vaginally.
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#2 of 49 Old 06-29-2007, 12:17 AM
 
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I haven't tried one of those. But I too have cystocele. Mine is a stage 4!. I'm sorry you haven't gotten any other replies yet. I know that this sort of thing can be heart wrenching. It was for me because my midwife will not deliver anymore of my babies because of it. : We wanted to try for another girl in 4 years. Do you know what this sort of thing is caused from? What did your doctor tell you? I've been reading Whole Woman to find more about this. Still reading it. And still learning. No one should ever have to deal with this. I hope you get better.
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#3 of 49 Old 06-29-2007, 02:41 PM
 
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I have this problem too and it seems like no one else does. What have you done to ease the problem? I am 16 months post-partum and the bulge is still quite huge- esp. in the afternoon, when I've been wearing my baby and after a bm.

My doctor doesn't seem to think it's a big deal and no one seems to know if it will affect having more children (or what it will do to my body if I do).

So, I'm not really sure what I'm saying here- but would love to talk with some other women who also have this problem.
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#4 of 49 Old 06-29-2007, 07:15 PM
 
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I think women experience saggy pelvic floors because we have under-developed ab muscles.

In my experience, including visits to a physical therapist, and 4 years of reading and study on this issue, the lack of core strength is what causes many women to have pelvic prolapse...it seems odd, but the only thing keeping women upright when their abs are weak, back muscles are weak, glutes are weak--is the pelvic floor.

So the good news is, the pelvic floor is so awesome, it can hold you up--but it cannot do it very well, and sure, by the end of the day, and any straining which causes intra-abdominal pressure to increase (i.e., the BM) will actively push the pelvic floor muscles down and out, and make the problem worse.

Carefully working on core strength, perhaps with the guidance of a physical therapist (because if your pelvic floor is currently working to keep you upright, there's a whole lot of ab-requiring moves that your body has found new ways to execute without using your abs) will allow the pelvic floor to do its job, and ONLY it's job.

It is possible for extreme birthing scenarios to cause trauma (i.e., forceps, 5 or more hours of pushing) and cause a cystocele, but I think for most women, core strength is key.

I recently read this book,
http://www.amazon.com/Baby-Bikini-Mi...3152985&sr=8-1
which might win the award for Worst Book Title Ever, but the author of this book correctly instructs pregnant and post-partum women on how to properly tone the abdominals--simply DOING CRUNCHES is not the answer, as there can be a diastis of the recti muscles. While the author doesn't talk about the pelvic floor w/ his book, it's one of the most useful books I've read on ab strength.
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#5 of 49 Old 07-02-2007, 12:09 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I was referred to a urogynecologist. He referred me to a PA who does pelvic floor physical therapy. I will start this week and my insurance will cover weekly therapyl. I really hope it will help.
I'll let you all know.
By the way, I bought the V2 supporter on line. It does seem to help a bit, once you get over how hideous it is! Also support undergarments like spanx help, they make some that only go to the thigh. they pull things upward so you aren't as aware of that dragging droopy feeling.
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#6 of 49 Old 07-02-2007, 12:11 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm sorry yours is grade 4. When was your baby born?
I'm curious to know why your midwife won't deliver any more babies?
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#7 of 49 Old 07-02-2007, 02:44 AM
 
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Grade 4. It sucks. IC too which just AGGRAVATES the whole thing! What is PA? My Midwife went with me to a doctor she recommended. He scared the crap out of the both of us! He told me I look like a 60 year old...ahem down there , I'm 29 so yes I hiccuped-BAWLED for two straight days. Got maybe two hours of sleep during that time. I can't believe he told me I look like a 60 yr old, I JUST HAD A BABY for cryin' out loud. He needs a good swift kick in the pants! If it weren't for the prayers I'd still be a basket case. All my friends prayed for me. Sorry, I don't mean to sound so pathetic. Back to your question, after my MW saw the horrified look on the nurses face and was throughly intimidated by the Dr. , she agreed with him that my next child will have to be born via c/s. Liam was born 10 wks ago. MW won't deliver anymore of MY babies. She'll still practice. That was at 8wks pp. Since then I've been doing TONS of research.

Your 5wks pp and only a grade 3. Consider your self lucky. You still have time to heal. So do I. And your SO SMART for taking care of yourself! Being pro-active in our healing process will account for a successful pp recovery. (In England) They won't do an evaluation for prolapse surgery until ONE YEAR post partum as they consider the vagina to be in trauma until that time. No S**T
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In chinese medicine, post partum is a period of two years, your body can repair itself.
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#8 of 49 Old 07-02-2007, 11:16 AM
 
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(In England) They won't do an evaluation for prolapse surgery until ONE YEAR post partum as they consider the vagina to be in trauma until that time. No S**T[/B]
and
In chinese medicine, post partum is a period of two years, your body can repair itself.
This is amazing information and very important--I did not know this....thank you for sharing!
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#9 of 49 Old 07-03-2007, 04:28 PM
 
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Hi mamas. Mind if I join you? I am one year postpartum w/my 4th baby and recently learned I have a uterine prolapse & cystocele. My GYN recommended a hysterectomy & bladder sling (!!). Ummmmm, no! I am going to see a urologist this week, just to get a full diagnostic picture, but I am not doing any surgery. Wholewoman.com has been a lifesaver to me. I ordered her books & video. I do the exercises daily and am awaiting her book on Nutrition & Prolapse. I am also looking into Mayan Uterine Massage & seeing my chiropractor. Today I saw some Red Raspberry Leaf Tea in my cupboard, left over from pregnancy, and realized this would probably be a good thing to start drinking again too.

What's everyone else doing to take care of themselves? Anyone have any good supplement recommendations?

When I first learned about this I was so freaked out. I never suspected I could have such a thing. Other than this, I feel so healthy & strong. I vascilate between feeling optimistic and empowered, to feeling overwhelmed, depressed, and like my body is failing me.

I'd love to dialog with other mamas experiencing this if you're interested.

Happy mama of four Wild Things
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#10 of 49 Old 07-03-2007, 09:52 PM - Thread Starter
 
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These are difficult diagnoses to have. I totally understand the feeling you have had of "my body is failing me".
It doesn't seem to make sense for any of us.
How could it be that just a few years ago I ran the NYC marathon? Now I can't walk more than 15 blocks without feeling saggy and wiped out.
I did all of that prenatal yoga, have always been very active and fit, and I end up with this? I can completely relate.

It is also a challenge to be a mom of multiple children and deal with this.
It sounds like you are doing everything you can.
Perhaps you can get a referral for some physical therapy. There is another mdc member who has had really great results with PT.
I'm giving that a whirl.
I am also interested in nutritional support for this and would love to hear what you find.

I purchased the V2 supporter. I'm not that crazy about it, but have seen other posters on wholewoman say that it helped their prolapse. I feel like it is constricting (but i suppose that is the idea). A midwife/friend of mine recommended support shorts like hanes body enhancers or spanx. I was skeptical, but now find they help my symptoms of saggy feelings. I put them on and honestly feel like they support my pelvic floor and energize me!
I hope that your consult goes well with the specialist.
stay well.
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#11 of 49 Old 07-04-2007, 02:45 AM
 
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I felt so harshly judged and maimed when the doctor said what he said and that I too needed a hysterectomy. "I hate that doctors are so cavalier about removing women's reproductive organs when there is nothing wrong with them - except that they are in the wrong place." I'm sorry, I have to give credit for nicoley73 for saying that very quote to me once. It was a broad cyber shoulder to cry on. I saw the doctor again last Saturday and this time dh went with me. He had 1 hr of sleep within 24hrs because he is in training from work. Bless him. He asked the doctor, "Bottom line, can she have a vaginal delivery or not?" His reply, "Yes". Dh- "Ookay, what can happen?" Doctor, "Probably nothing". He prescribed Premarin, an estrogen cream. He said it would speed up my recovery. I'm suppose to use it for three days straight at bed time and then every other day for two weeks and then once a month for three months then not at all. I'm afraid to use it. I'm still researching to see if its safe. I'm bf so will it effect my milk supply?
If your looking for a PT in your area this is a great site to go to. Be sure to find one that specializes in women's health.

Sorry about my grammar tonight ya'll. I love to read care free writing. It shows character. I'm sorta picky about the way I write. Excuse my poor writing skills. They're at rest because I am SO TIRED!!!
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#12 of 49 Old 07-04-2007, 07:59 AM
 
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Thank you for the warm welcome mamas. I am glad to find such a supportive thread. I have been posting on Whole Woman, but not getting any replies (?) and was feeling kinds bummed about it.

Fruitful Womb, re: the Premarin, there are natural forms of the estrogen creams available called Bioidentical Hormone Replacement (BHRT) that might be a better fir for you. BHRT are made from either soy or yams. Premarin is made from preggnant horse urine. My dh works in this field. He says there are plenty of compounding pharmacies in TX that could make them up for you. You would need your doctor to write a presciption. Feel free to PM me if you'd like more info. Congratulations on your pregnancy. When are you due?

Querico, where did you buy your support shorts? That sounds really interesting, especially for when I exercise or am really busy. I also have varicose veins from my pregnancy that I thought went away, but now my prolapse seems to be pushing on them and they are painful again. Maybe the shorts could help this. I have support hose but it is way too hot for them, and they choke the life out of me!

Oh, and if you ladies are posting on Whole Woman, my user name there is H (max was taken).

So glad to meet you all.

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#13 of 49 Old 07-04-2007, 12:41 PM
 
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Wow its nice to know who you are over there! I'll look you up. I'm not pregnant At least I don't think I am. Dh was asking about the vaginal delivery because we want to ttc a girl in 4 yrs from now. Thanks for the info on the Premerin. Do I have to get a prescription for the BHRT? Happy 4th of July Mammas!!

~*max*~, where are my manners! Your a wise woman!
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#14 of 49 Old 07-04-2007, 06:23 PM
 
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I ordered a fembrace when my uterus prolapsed at 2 weeks post partum. It really helped me feel better - it was a little uncomfortable and restricting, but I felt much more secure that nothing was falling out while I was wearing it.

I'm now 11 weeks out and feel pretty much back to normal most days. I think the physical therapy really helped. I had 5 sessions and my PT told me to continue my exercises daily for at least 16 weeks. I do both kegel and core (abdomen) exercises and think that the core strengthening was key in helping my recovery. My OB had described my pelvic floor damage as significant - at 2 weeks pp my cervix was coming out of me by the end of the day - and told me that while PT couldn't hurt, it probably wouldn't help too much. But my therapist was very encouraging from day one.

These are the things that helped me:

my mother started talking about my issues with the women in her office and 3 of them experienced prolapse after childbirth that essentially resolved itself. I had no idea it was so common. It made me feel less defective to know that others had the same problem.

I limited stairs, lifting, did nothing high impact or that involved abdomenal pressure. I made sure I was not constipated - my PT said that straining on the toilet is really bad.

I knew that I needed to wait until 3 months (at least) after I weaned to make a true evaluation of my status. And I plan to bf until at least a year. So I had a long time before I could even really think about what steps I would take. And I would not despair until that point - luckily my 2 kids keep me very distracted...

I think also a positive attitude from both yourself and your loved ones helps. My dh and mom always told me that I would be fine and it really kept me going.
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#15 of 49 Old 07-04-2007, 08:42 PM
 
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Wow its nice to know who you are over there! I'll look you up. I'm not pregnant At least I don't think I am. Dh was asking about the vaginal delivery because we want to ttc a girl in 4 yrs from now. Thanks for the info on the Premerin. Do I have to get a prescription for the BHRT? Happy 4th of July Mammas!!

~*max*~, where are my manners! Your a wise woman!
: I just assumed about the pregnancy - sorry!
Yes, you would need a prescription for the BHRT. www.womeninbalence.org and www.zrtlab.com are sites that my dh says have some good info.

Thanks for the warm welcome.

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#16 of 49 Old 07-04-2007, 08:50 PM
 
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Hi nicoley, it sounds like you had a really positive & productive plan in place. I am really glad to hear about the women your mom knows whose prolapses healed. That is encouraging. If you don't mind my asking, you said you needed to wait until 3 months after weaning to make a decision about your course of action. Was this bc bfing has an impact on prolapse, or bc of another reason? I am bfing my one year old right now, and I have wondered how the hormones might be impacting my prolapse, for exapmle keeping my ligaments loose.

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#17 of 49 Old 07-04-2007, 10:17 PM
 
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If you don't mind my asking, you said you needed to wait until 3 months after weaning to make a decision about your course of action. Was this bc bfing has an impact on prolapse, or bc of another reason? I am bfing my one year old right now, and I have wondered how the hormones might be impacting my prolapse, for exapmle keeping my ligaments loose.
Apparently your estrogen levels are lower while breastfeeding, and low estrogen can lead to thinner, weaker vaginal tissue - that provides less support to the other organs. A lot of women develop prolapse after menopause. I have no intention of weaning early, and no doctor I talked to suggested it, but you should be done with nursing before thinking about surgery, imo.
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#18 of 49 Old 07-05-2007, 09:03 AM
 
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It is probably not necessary to wean before surgery if your cycles are normal indicating decent estrogen levels.
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#19 of 49 Old 07-05-2007, 02:53 PM
 
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Just wanted to let you mamas who post on WholeWoman know that I changed my username over there to Indigo. (It's my horse's name, so it feels more powerful to me. And in this situation, I need all the help I can get!)

Happy mama of four Wild Things
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#20 of 49 Old 07-05-2007, 03:07 PM
 
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Has anyone tried out a V2 supporter to help discomfort from a postpartum cystocele? I'm 5 weeks PP and have a grade 3 cystocele. It's very uncomfortable, especially by the afternoon, when the bulge tends to increase and really protrude vaginally.
I have one that I use almost daily. It's a life saver for those days when the bulge seems unbearable I actually started wearing mine while pg with DS 2 yrs ago. I've also tried a pessary & a sea spong but nothing has been helpful. I did consult a urogyn & was going to opt for surgery but then I found the whole woman site & nixed surgery.

I also saw a PT who specialized in pelvic floor issues who told me there are many, many factors that contribute to this condition. Poor abdominal support can be one of them but that isn't always the case. I had awesome abs prior to conceiving DD (I was training for a body building show) & I still experienced a prolapse 3 mos. PP. The PT thought it was from 8 hrs of pushing during my 1st labor

Lola , loving my DH, Mama to & we &
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#21 of 49 Old 07-05-2007, 10:34 PM
 
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Just wanted to let you mamas who post on WholeWoman know that I changed my username over there to Indigo. (It's my horse's name, so it feels more powerful to me. And in this situation, I need all the help I can get!)
Indigo, cool name!
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#22 of 49 Old 07-06-2007, 12:24 AM
 
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querico, do you just have cystocele? No problems with any other kinds of prolapse? I've never heard of just cystocele and nothing else. As far as it being a postpartum issue. Not that I dont' believe you, because I do believe that its possible. Did your doctor happen to say that with a cystocele your bladder won't ever empty completely? I've been told that when the bladder drops below the pelvis it will retain urine in the area that is dropped. Does that make sense? Sorry so wordy I'm having a hard time asking the question.

I can't imagine what the V2 supporter does to make it actually work. I would love it if someone could explain that to me. Thanks I'm so glad you mamas are opening up because I've been completely out of my mind feeling so alone in this.
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#23 of 49 Old 07-06-2007, 08:04 AM
 
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Fruitful womb, I do have a uterine prolapse and cyctocele. When I went to the urologist yesterday they did an ultrasound to see if I was able to empty my bladder fully. It it came back that I am. I hope that doesn't change if it prolapses more?!

And I hear ya on the going out of your mind w/this. I am so w/you!! It helps a lot to havee others to talk to about it.

PS, beautiful pictures in your siggy.

Happy mama of four Wild Things
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#24 of 49 Old 07-07-2007, 08:11 PM
 
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Great thread! I think this is one of those things that a lot of women suffer, but not many talk about.

A couple of questions about some of the support garments mentioned above: How do the Fembrace, V2 Supporter and the like work? I looked at the V2 online and it looks beyond uncomfortable. Does it provide comfort and/or does it actually help reverse the prolapse(s)? Thanks!
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#25 of 49 Old 07-08-2007, 12:02 AM - Thread Starter
 
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This thread has really flourished in the few days that i have been away!
Hi to all. Thanks for the positive story and tips Nicole.

I have a few comments replies to the various posters. The "body enhancers " support "shorts" are really just short versions of support hose. Here is a link to the Hanes, which are much cheaper than the Spanx, but seem to do the same thing. Again, these may not be for everyone, esp in a hot climate - they are made of nylon and spandex!
http://www.onehanesplace.com/cgi-bin...nbr=5051000000

The V2 supporter just attempts to provide support or compression to the vaginal area. To me, it's affects are external. I do not think that this will actually help reverse the problem, but may provide a sensation of support, which is often what you need when you are up and about.
It is adjustable, but I found the backstraps to be visible through certain pants.
The last time I wore it ( i only used twice) it seemed to be squeezing me more than supporting me. I think you will only know if it will help your case by trying it out. Some women seem to find it very helpful.

Re: estrogen issues. Estrace three times a week was also recommended to me intravaginally.
I was also told that Breastfeeding may delay recovery. I will continue to breastfeed my son, but am trying the Estrace. My midwife researched it and discussed with her head lactation consultant. They agree that the amount of estrogen given vaginally in this case will not impact breast milk production. I have no issues with supply so far (am 7 wks PP now), in fact I seem to have a great supply.
My uro gyn also explained that estrogen is essential for the rebuilding of collagen, which provides the structural support to the collagenated smooth muscle that encases the vagina.

I do have just a cystocele. I have an anterior vaginal wall "defect", as it is referred to medically.
It is possible to have just a cystocele, a rectocele, a uterine prolapse or all 3 or 2 of the conditions.
Here's a clip from the email from my urogyn explaining a grade 3 cystocele:
The vagina is encased in very collagenated smoth muscle. This is attached to the arcus tendineous fascia lata with is a layer of fascia that lies on the levator muscles which are the main muscles of you your pelvic floor. In your case, instead of this being a stretching of this smooth muscle encasing the vagina, itis likely a tear of this muscle off of its insertion on that lateral fascia.


This clip from him was very encouraging to me:
The greatest risk factor for this type of problem is a difficult delivery. It is not uncommon to have a 1st or 2nd degree cystocele after delivery.* All stages improve with time and most will not require any surgical procedures.* You are at a higher risk of it becoming a problem many years from now.* Hopefully by maintaining a good exercise program to keep your pelvic floor strong, you will avoid this as well.

(he clarified later that grade 3-4 are less common.) Improvement is still possible over time..

Thanks to everyone for the feedback. it is all very helpful.
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#26 of 49 Old 07-08-2007, 02:02 PM
 
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The V2 supporter just attempts to provide support or compression to the vaginal area. To me, it's affects are external. I do not think that this will actually help reverse the problem, but may provide a sensation of support, which is often what you need when you are up and about.
It is adjustable, but I found the backstraps to be visible through certain pants.
The last time I wore it ( i only used twice) it seemed to be squeezing me more than supporting me. I think you will only know if it will help your case by trying it out. Some women seem to find it very helpful.
t gets rid of that heavy feeling--like things are falling out of your body

Lola , loving my DH, Mama to & we &
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#27 of 49 Old 07-08-2007, 02:10 PM
 
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subbing...

I had a long pushing phase last month (~4 hrs, ending in shoulder dystocia and a 4th degree tear that is currently held together with 100+ sutures...ugh) and will be seeing my OB and surgeon in 2 weeks to determine where I am physically. This thread has been a great help!

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#28 of 49 Old 07-08-2007, 07:17 PM
 
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My heart goes out to you wombatclay. My LO was a shoulder distocia birth, and it was terrifying. I think that is the reason for prolapses now.

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#29 of 49 Old 07-08-2007, 10:54 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm sorry to hear about your pushing phase, tear and dystocia. I hope that you are feeling better each day- it must be very uncomfortable.
Best to you and your baby
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#30 of 49 Old 07-09-2007, 10:10 AM
 
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thanks! My birth story is in my sig if you're curious. It was a wonderful vbac right up to those last 10 minutes (and the 45 minute repair), my dd is fine despite the scare, and reallly I'm thrilled at having a drug free vbac birth.

My OB teaches a class for midwives on repairing 4th degree tears so I know she did a good job...but she told me I'm at much higher risk for incontinance, prolapse, and rectocele. And long pushing/4th degree tears seem to lead to problems down the road even when they seem fine right off the bat. She said that we need to wait till the immediate swelling/sutures are gone to see "where I am" (though full healing may take 6-8 months). So I'm 4 weeks pp now and in 2 weeks I'll meet with my OB and at 8 weeks with a PT who specializes in pelvic floor injuries.

The mamas here at mdc have been really wonderful with ideas for immediate healing and future vaginal/perineal health. And the whole woman site suggested here has been great too! I was so worried that somehow my dreamed of and fought for vbac had set me up for more surgery and a life long "problem". It's been a huge relief to find other mamas who can relate, and who have a positive BTDT voice.

Be pretty! Be practical! Be Pagan! Visit Pagan Hearth & Home!
 mama to lady.gif(4/05), hearts.gif(6/07vbac), diaper.gif(8/09vbac), and babygirl.gif (9/11vbac)

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