some comments from an old OB - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 16 Old 09-23-2003, 04:20 PM - Thread Starter
 
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my dh's grandfather is a retired obstetrician. he's 79, and practiced as an Air Force OB from the late 40s until 74, and then worked for the state of Florida until 87, so he had a long career.
anyway, i asked him over dinner what did he do when a baby was breech. he looked at me like i was insane and said "DO? what do you mean what did i DO? i delivered the baby for god's sakes!"
:LOL
and then i said a bit about how the protocol now is for the OB to do a c/s when the baby is breech, and he shook his head disgustedly. he said "if i had to perform surgery every time a baby was breech i would have never gotten out of the OR."
he then got kind of fired up and said "they don't teach them a damn thing except how to cut and you know why?" and i of course answered "money," but he contends that it's not money in the way i'm thinking, like billing, but insurance and the tendency for people to sue over anything. so if a doctor has a woman come in with a breech baby and he doesn't do a c/s, and there's ANYTHING wrong with the baby, he gets sued and his insurance skyrockets, effectively putting him out of a job.
i just thought it was interesting to hear from someone on the other side so to speak.
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#2 of 16 Old 09-23-2003, 05:54 PM
 
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Funny.....I had a friend that delivered 10 days ago via c/s because that
baby was breech!:
My SIL is in labor as we speak! She has been in the hospital since last
night and is not 'progressing.' She is supposedly overdue a few days
and they induced. I say the baby just isn't ready yet....give the baby
time. The doc says 'we'll do a c/s in 10 hours if nothing progresses by
then!'

typical
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#3 of 16 Old 09-23-2003, 06:08 PM - Thread Starter
 
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i always shake my head at the breech c/sections because I WAS A FOOTLING BREECH!!!!! hell, i made it out alright, how come no one else is allowed to?
the way my mom tells it is pretty funny. she said she "felt something down there" and made my dad look and there was my foot, just dangling out like i was checking the temperature or something. :LOL
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#4 of 16 Old 09-23-2003, 11:47 PM
 
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That foot story made me crack up!:LOL Was this during labor or just
while she was sitting around?

Well my SIL ended up delivering vaginally afterall! She started to dilate
and 'viola' and baby girl.
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#5 of 16 Old 09-24-2003, 12:45 AM
 
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I know a lady who recently delivered twins vaginally - both breech, and both over 7 lbs!!!
Of course, the dictor didn't realize either that it was twins, or that they were breech.
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#6 of 16 Old 09-24-2003, 02:31 AM
 
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Elphaba, you were walking out!

Yep, it's all about malpractice insurance. We shouldn't kid ourselves - the sad thing is, the cover-your-ass malpractice protocols are so NOT evidence-based that they result in MORE lawsuits. Go figure.
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#7 of 16 Old 09-24-2003, 08:19 AM - Thread Starter
 
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khrisday, that is awesome about the twins! my dd's godmother also had her twins vaginally. the OB originally wanted her to push out the boy because he was vertex, and then section her for the girl, as she was breech. but her dd flipped and both emerged just fine.

as for me, my mom had issues with premature labor with every one of us (10 pregnancies). so she was actually in the bed hooked up to an IV of alcohol, to "Relax the womb." so i guess i was drunk and fell out. kind of set up a pattern for the college years.
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#8 of 16 Old 09-24-2003, 06:55 PM
 
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Elphaba, the picture those stories put in my head have me:LOL
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#9 of 16 Old 09-24-2003, 08:04 PM
 
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One of my sisters had a similar twin story. One was breech, one wasn't, both weighed over 7 lbs. After about 40 hours of labor (this was in the '80s) she delivered the LOA twin and then the doctors wanted to section. She said "No way!" and ended up pushing out the second twin only 10 minutes later. She's a nurse and knew in advance they'd insist on sectioning - she decided in advance she'd insist on NOT.
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#10 of 16 Old 09-25-2003, 02:01 AM
 
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It always amazes me when doctors say they don't know how to deliver a baby. Why don't they just learn? Why don't med school classes teach this?

Pretty soon doctors won't know how to do vaginal births at all anymore.

Perhaps, in order to be licensed physicians, doctors should have to attend a certain number of homebirths with midwives so they can learn how to do stuff.
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#11 of 16 Old 09-27-2003, 09:46 PM
 
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I am really bothered that an OB isn't trained to deliver ANY KIND OF BABY, no matter what the position.
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#12 of 16 Old 09-28-2003, 12:23 AM
 
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I wonder, though, did your dh's grandfather deliver breech babies over an intact perineum? Back in his day, wasn't it all about the twilight sleep, women strapped to the table because they freaked out during twilight sleep, lithotomy position, episiotomies, forceps? Just because they didn't section (speaking generally here, not necessarily about dh's gf) didn't mean they didn't tear women up in other ways.

I'm reading Ina May Gaskin's Spiritual Guide to Midwifery and in the breech birth stories from back in the 70s, the doctor is willing to deliver them but cuts huge episiotomies. A couple of them he wanted to do in the hospital under general anesthesia.

I agree that doctors today are way, way too intervention- and section-happy, but I wonder whether we haven't traded one set of asinine OB practices for another. I for one wouldn't get all nostalgic for the good old days quite yet.

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#13 of 16 Old 09-28-2003, 09:10 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I don't know. I really wanted to talk about all that stuff, but I was scared to bring up those subjects. He's old and on oxygen and I didn't want to be the one to cause some sort of episode.
Maybe I can email him some articles about birth or something and ask him how things have changed since he started. I'm probably the only weirdo in the family who is interested in hearing about how he practiced his skills.
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#14 of 16 Old 09-28-2003, 03:08 PM
 
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I hear that hospitals with "low" section rates often have very high rates of epis and forceps or VE. Either way, a woman is going to get cut.
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#15 of 16 Old 09-28-2003, 03:50 PM
 
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The practice I use will deliver breech babies vaginally.
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#16 of 16 Old 10-06-2003, 10:22 PM
 
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This thread reminded me of my grandfather who was a D.O. until he was 85.
Before women wanted to go to hospitals, he caught all the town's babies at their homes. A lot of baby boys in that area grew up with his first name.
According to my grandmother he would "give the mothers hell" telling them to breastfeed and not to circumcise.

When the people couldn't pay, he wouldn't bill them and then when the kids were grown and wanted their birth certificates, they would come to him to pay for the birth, which cost $35.00.

wave.gif
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