are you planning to do any of the big tests we have coming up? - Page 2 - Mothering Forums

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#31 of 46 Old 11-04-2004, 11:04 PM
 
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s sunbaby

This really is such a hard issue. For myself I waver on the difference between "diagnostic" versus "routine." My midwives highly reccomend early pg US when due date is in ? and a late pg US because they feel it helps them make educated descisions about delivery risk factors. These are effectively "routine" US. Does that make them unnessesary?

In anycase, I'm glad that I have the option and that it's my choice.
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#32 of 46 Old 11-05-2004, 12:24 AM
 
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Ok, I don't know the names, but I'm assuming these screens are the ones that screeen for Down Syndrome, as well as spina bifida, and the others mentioned. If so, we opted out of it. My midwife told me that there are lots of false positives/negatives and it really only tells you if you have a higher risk. Not if your child actually has one of them. That would require further testing. So we decided not to do it. We wouldn't abort the baby, so we decided to not do the test.

The ultrasound, for me, is very important. This pregnancy is very close to my miscarriage (it was 16 weeks ago and I am 16 weeks pregnant) Since we had to go by last bleeding, which was the miscarriage. I wasn't charting because we were using stuff to prevent a pregnancy. We don't know the actual time I got pregnant, so we don't know when I'm actually due. My midwife said it's very important to do the ultrasound so that we don't start thinking I'm really overdue when I'm not, or we aren't thinking I'm going too early. ALl of this makes sense to me, plus we aren't doing the ultrasound until around 21 weeks, so we will ba able to check all the organs and such.

As for gender, I don't want to know, dh does. We will see.

Serenity LDS mommy to 4 rambunctious kidlets
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#33 of 46 Old 11-07-2004, 05:53 PM
 
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Hey, Sunbaby. Here's a big warm hug. And an apology if it was my note that you responded defensively to. It was not my intent to create friction. May I clarify?

I have two seemingly opposing belief systems operating here, and I may have come across strongly as a result. My first belief is that each individual's decision is right for him/her and that there is no universal right or wrong. Inherent in that is accepting that someone else's "right" may be my "wrong" and that doesn't make either of us bad, or poor parents, or poor decision makers or anything like that.

My second belief is that our society puts a lot of stock in modern medicine and that the modern medicine community is fairly one-sided in it's views of things. What often ends up happening, in my view, is that individuals then make decisions based on limited information. (This can be true whether the person is involved in the modern medical world for a disease such as cancer or a wellness such as birth.) I do get mad about that.

In terms of birthing, I think every obstetrician should be aware of the very different approach of midwives and make that information available to their potential patients, and that midwives should similarly make their potential patients aware of the very different approaches of obstetricians and provide pertinent information on that method.

The more I have researched and learned about birthing practices, the angrier I have gotten at the medical system. Having said that, I know that there are some instances in which it is provides miracles and is a God-send. I just think that it has become over-protective and over-used to the point of doing damage. (It is hard to swallow, for example, that the US national average for C-sections is 25% - and the World Health Organization's recommended rate is no higher than10%!!!) That over-zealousness is at the basis of my personal concern about the various tests that are offered and is part of my reason for not taking them.

The best book that I have read thus far that highlights, in an unbiased, direct and scientific way (yet is exceedingly easy to read!) the differences and the pros and cons of hospital and midwifery care is Ina May's Guide to Childbirth by Ina May Gaskin. (The first part of the book is filled with stories of natural childbirth at home or at a midwifery birth center, the second part is written by Ina May and covers what I mentioned above. While Ina May is a midwife and clearly thinks that for most births it is a preferable way to go, she admirably keeps this out of her reporting about various options and procedures available to birthing women.) I highly recommend it as a way of gathering information so that decisions can be made based on a more well-rounded basis of knowledge.

My wish for you, Sunbaby, and all of the other expectant mothers & fathers out there (including myself!), is that each of us makes decisions that we feel really good about - that fit into our individual mix of knowledge, belief, emotion, spirituality, desires etc. And that no matter what the results are we can look forward with pride knowing that we did the best we could do at the moments of decision making.

Warmly,
Julie

From Sunbaby

i am feeling a little defensive right now. maybe no one is really trying to correct my chioce, but i am feeling bad. i thought we'd just talk about our choices as individual families, and didnt ever think it would come out feeling kind of like a debate about the merits vs. risks of ultrasound. maybe i am just sensetive. i am all outa sorts from the election and many of my interactions this week seem to leave me feeling stressed. sorry if i am being really emtional. could someone pls just give me a hug now?

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#34 of 46 Old 11-07-2004, 07:21 PM - Thread Starter
 
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thanks for the hug julie. i think if you read carefully my op as well as my later post, you will see that we are pretty much on the same page re/ conventional modern medecine. i have a midwife. i am planning a homebirth. our primary health care comes from an acupuncturist and a naturopath. i have made this one desicion in favor of the medical model, and it is, i believe, an informed desicion. so, other than the fact that i am feeling defensive on this issue (and wonder now if i am acting like my mom : ) and childishly dislike being told what i already know, i think we will get along famously and look forward to having you join us on the april mamas forum.
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#35 of 46 Old 11-07-2004, 07:51 PM
 
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I will not get any testing done other than the u/s. Heck, I don't even want to go to my appointments! I figure, what's the point . . .if anything (G** forbid) happens, there is nothing that my MW can do anyway.

As far as why the u/s . . .really, it's for the sake of gender. Though I must say, even this isn't such a compelling reason. DH, I am certain, is psychic in this department. He's guessed the genders accurately of the last 6 babies born among friends/families . . .he's never wrong! (He thinks girl again for us.) As far as doing it for medical reasons, I just don't think about it. My first thought is that everything is fine. I just have to have that faith. If it's not, I'll deal with it when it happens, as I don't think I'd abort (though I am pro-choice, but this is my choice).

I asked the MW about problems with u/s (negaitve effects). Though she does recommend them (she is hospital-based), she says that the results are inconclusive. She says there just isn't enough data to be certain one way or another. So, I can understand why people wouldn't want an u/s, but there isn't enough (or any as far as I know) evidence against them either. It would be fear of the unknown more than anything to not get one.

So, at 19 weeks, hopefully it will be a quick u/s, we'll find out the gender, and all will be well . . .but this is a best-case scenario. I figure if this scenario doesn't go as planned, only THEN will I know what to do. For me, it's one of those "Unless you're in the situation, you don't know what you'll do."

ETA: One pet-peeve I want to mention is when people think we want to find out the gender because we have a preference. For the record, I have no preference!!!!! Of COURSE we'd welcome any baby with open arms . . .I just want to know NOW!

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#36 of 46 Old 11-08-2004, 12:38 AM - Thread Starter
 
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oh elena. i wish i knew your husband. then i wouldnt have to wait until the 20 wk sonogram to find out my baby's sex. like you, i couldnt really care too much for myself (though dh's extended family is rooting for a boy), i mean, i hope it's a boy. i hope it's a girl. heck, i just hope its human, although today dd said she thinks its a pony. that would be intersting too, although we would certainly need to be prepared- do you think they will be able to tell on the sonogram? anyway, just want to know at 20 weeks instead of 40.

ok, can you guys tell that my dh has been gone for two weeks and i am feeling lonely and a little nutty from exhaustion and stress?
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#37 of 46 Old 11-08-2004, 08:48 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by natashaccat
s sunbaby

This really is such a hard issue. For myself I waver on the difference between "diagnostic" versus "routine." My midwives highly reccomend early pg US when due date is in ? and a late pg US because they feel it helps them make educated descisions about delivery risk factors. These are effectively "routine" US. Does that make them unnessesary?

In anycase, I'm glad that I have the option and that it's my choice.
I wouldn't say a late u/s is even a routine u/s. I would say it's an unnecessary u/s that ups the chance of you having unwanted interventions. I hope you will look into late u/s a bit more before you have one just because that's what your midwives normally do. In my case I had one because they were concerned about the size of my baby. The ultrasound at 38 weeks estimated she was 9.5lbs. I was pressured for the next two weeks to at least consider induction or a c-section. I went into labor on my own the evening of my EDD. DD was born at 9lbs 13oz which was the better part of half a lb smaller than my biggest baby. According to the u/s she should have been 11.5lbs at this time. The midwives accepted this estimate as set in stone. They even made me sign a modified consent form that said the baby was 11.5lbs! It totally affected the treatment DD and I received and I think it's largely responsible for DD ending up in the NICU. Now if you're 42 weeks and they want to check your fluid levels or something well fine and good. But a routine u/s to check the size of the baby I would definitely investigate because they are just horribly horribly inaccurate and can make your birth much more difficult.
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#38 of 46 Old 11-08-2004, 09:28 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wasabi
I wouldn't say a late u/s is even a routine u/s. I would say it's an unnecessary u/s that ups the chance of you having unwanted interventions. I hope you will look into late u/s a bit more before you have one just because that's what your midwives normally do.
I can definately see where you are coming from and I somewhat agree but frankly, since this is the only prenatal diagnostic test of the baby's health that I will be doing, I feel a strong need to rule out major birth defects prior to giving birth at a birth center. I could deal with an unnessesary hospital birth even if it ended in CS but I would never be able to forgive myself if the baby suffered from some illness that could have been aleviated or more effectively treated had he/she been born in a hospital.
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#39 of 46 Old 11-08-2004, 10:02 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by natashaccat
I can definately see where you are coming from and I somewhat agree but frankly, since this is the only prenatal diagnostic test of the baby's health that I will be doing, I feel a strong need to rule out major birth defects prior to giving birth at a birth center. I could deal with an unnessesary hospital birth even if it ended in CS but I would never be able to forgive myself if the baby suffered from some illness that could have been aleviated or more effectively treated had he/she been born in a hospital.
Maybe it wasn't clear but I'm talking about a late u/s for "detecting risk factors" for labor. I'm not talking about having a u/s at 20 weeks to check for physiology. I'm doing that myself. If you've already had two u/s they should really be able to pick up birth defects that are going to be diagnosable. In fact the late u/s aren't really good for that because everything is so crowded. It was by far the fastest u/s I had (I had one at 20 weeks and one to check on fluid levels). If your midwives say they routinely do a late u/s to check for risk factors for labor I doubt seriously that they're talking about a level II u/s to check for physiology. Maybe I'm wrong and they do do that but I'd certainly check before agreeing to one. I've already told my new midwives there won't be any late u/s this time around.

ETA I think it's much more a question of what info are they hoping to gain and for what purpose. I wouldn't do one just because that's what they normally do KWIM? That's not why I go to midwives.
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#40 of 46 Old 11-09-2004, 01:06 AM
 
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Comment about a late u/s (close to due date) . . .I've been told that the MW group I'm going to will do u/s regularly once you are past your due date . . .to me, this is better than being induced, but it still concerns me. (I am getting the 19 week one.)

Hopefully, I'll be a little early (I was with DD) so this won't be an issue, but still . . .does anyone else have experience with this? I can see the rationale behind it, but the u/s person said that the MWs (at this particular hospital) do MORE u/s than OBs . . .but then again, maybe the OBs would just induce and be done with it!

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#41 of 46 Old 11-09-2004, 05:24 PM
 
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Elena mine will only do a u/s after I get to 42 weeks if a non-stress shows the need for a follow-up. But as you say yes it's better than assuming they need to induce you right away.
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#42 of 46 Old 11-09-2004, 06:19 PM
 
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Originally Posted by wasabi
Now if you're 42 weeks and they want to check your fluid levels or something well fine and good. But a routine u/s to check the size of the baby I would definitely investigate because they are just horribly horribly inaccurate and can make your birth much more difficult.
Just wanted to add my experience though I doubt many of us are focused on the very end of the pregnancy process at this point. The midwives I went to last time require/demand/encourage (it's hard to tell) a 41 week u/s to look at the amniotic fluid. At that point, they determined that I had low fluid and tried to pressure me to induce which I managed to avoid for awhile. After a stressful time trying to nipple stimulate Finn into being born to avoid induction, I gushed with amniotic fluid when my waters finally broke. Later I found at that this measurement though I think well-intentioned is very inaccurate. I really like the idea, however, to wait until you have a problematic non-stress test post-dates to look at fluid. It can start the wave of intervention.

{Back to the second trimester}

Angie, Mama to Finn (6/01) and Theo (4/05)
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#43 of 46 Old 11-09-2004, 06:44 PM
 
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i just wanted to throw this out there. i think there is a huge difference between an ob doing an U/S and a tech! i think OBs just look, they don't really see.
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#44 of 46 Old 11-09-2004, 06:47 PM
 
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Just to let you know I'm not throwing random info out there ... and really I have no desire to debate the issue ... we all make the best choices and decisions we can for our babies.


My uncle is a neurosurgeon and I had the opportunity a few years ago to witness some amazing brain surgeries in one of Canada's major university hospitals ...in between surgeries while he was busy consulting with patients I waited in the Hospital radiology department library .... the only word I recognized on the shelves was ultrasound ... so I pulled down several large medical texts and research articles ... unfortunately I don't remember the titles or authors ... but the conclusions clearly stated that ultrasounds were not recommended for routine use as they have not been studied adequately for long term effects.

Also just before my dd was born almost 3 years ago another research article came out (a brief description was published on the cover of 'the national post') that demonstrated that ultrasounds have the potential to rewire the developing human brain ... I think it said something like in the study group (all males) it increased the likelihood that they were born left vs right handed by some rediculously large percentage ... and while changing someones handedness might seem inconsequential it's the rewiring that can't be seen or measured that concerns me.

Ultimately the choice is up to you (obviously) ... we all must weigh the pros and cons and come to our own conclusions.

Blessings

tireless sewer of teeny little clothes for Bamboletta dolls ...

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#45 of 46 Old 11-09-2004, 09:10 PM
 
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Originally Posted by LiminalOne
Just wanted to add my experience though I doubt many of us are focused on the very end of the pregnancy process at this point.
I've been focused on it since I got my BFP! Don't want a repeat of my experience with DD. :LOL
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#46 of 46 Old 11-10-2004, 05:14 PM
 
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On the issue of the study about u/s causing left-handedness I guess I have a lot of questions about that and would like to see some follow-up studies that come to the same conclusions. First and foremost in my mind is what exactly does it mean that it was a higher than expected rate of left-handedness. It's not been that long since we stopped forcing children to be right-handed my uncle wasn't allowed to be left-handed so I'm not sure how much I trust "expected rates" of handedness. Also did these mothers have one u/s, multiple u/s? How old were the kids when their handedness was determined? I still just have a lot of questions though of course I see the implication of the possibility of handedness being affected by u/s.
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