Tear WWYD? poss. TMI - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 22 Old 01-11-2010, 05:32 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I just delivered my #5 a couple hours ago.

I didn't think I tore at all, no stinging when I peed etc. DH looked and we realized I DO have perineal tear. I'm a little rusty on my degrees of tearing and I'm not really able to get a good look myself. It's long but judging by my lack of discomfort I'm inclined to think it's not deep. I have always been stitched in the past but I'm closing in on the window of time I have to get somewhere....plus I would need to go to an ER as that is my only option for stitching.

Any mamas out there who tore and DIDN'T get stitched?? I'm really not wanting to get stitched, it's my LEAST favorite part of birth. Seriously I hate that far more than labor but I'm slightly concerned about future issues if I don't.

Any advice from other mamas? I'd love to hear MsBlack's opinion if I'm lucky enough that she reads this soon!!!!!!
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#2 of 22 Old 01-11-2010, 06:21 PM
 
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Well, in the past I have had tears (most minor, one pretty big) and I have not gotten stitches for them but just allowed them to heal up on their own. Which they have done perfectly.

Any misspellings or grammatical errors in the above statement are intentional;
they are placed there for the amusement of those who like to point them out.
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#3 of 22 Old 01-11-2010, 06:23 PM
 
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Personally I would get it assessed by someone who is qualified to assess a tear and then make a decision whether or not to stitch.
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#4 of 22 Old 01-11-2010, 06:28 PM
 
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I agree with tessie. there was a horror story recently on one of the birth boards about someone who UCd (i think... maybe an oops) & ended up with reconstructive surgery because she didn't have her tear looked at. so i am clearly operating from a place of paranoia!
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#5 of 22 Old 01-11-2010, 06:37 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hmmm I think the whole reason I'm worried about this at ALL is because I read the same story. I've always torn, always healed and never had an issue. I think that story is what is making me nervous. I've always been stitched though. I'd have a 45 min minimum ride to an ER as my only stitching option. I'd still have to find childcare for my 4 kids and ride there in DH's work truck without the baby. I'm not swelling (the labor was under 1 hour total) and I'm really comfortable *down there* even when I go to the bathroom.

I truly appreciate the responses from both side and would be VERY interested in reading more but it looks like I'll be staying home this time. Maybe I'll search for that story and see if there were other issues surrounding her birth/tear to make me feel better LOL

THANK YOU
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#6 of 22 Old 01-11-2010, 06:48 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hedgehog Mtn View Post

I truly appreciate the responses from both side and would be VERY interested in reading more but it looks like I'll be staying home this time. Maybe I'll search for that story and see if there were other issues surrounding her birth/tear to make me feel better LOL
Hers was a major, major tear. Is there nobody who could come visit at home to assess you? Or could you see your family dr?
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#7 of 22 Old 01-11-2010, 07:12 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by tessie View Post
Hers was a major, major tear. Is there nobody who could come visit at home to assess you? Or could you see your family dr?
My Family Dr is down the street from the ER but he only works 2-3 days a week there and I'm not sure where he travels from. There isn't anyone who could come here at all.

I did a search and read a bunch of tear threads here on the UC board. Now I remember why that story stuck with me YIKES!
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#8 of 22 Old 01-11-2010, 07:17 PM
 
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I could tell I had a first degree tear after my UC, but I felt comfortable with my assessment skills. I left it alone and it healed just fine. If there was any question though, I would go in. That isn't really something you want to mess with or guess at, kwim?

Midwifery Student and Mama to 2 daughters and 3 sons.     
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#9 of 22 Old 01-11-2010, 07:19 PM
 
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When I had my DS I had a 2nd degree tear and the stitched me up... 5 days later my body dissolved the stitches. We ended up back at the midwife. They did not restitch me and stated that I would heal naturally, albeit slower but it would be a better heal as stitched heal from the outside in and can trap bacteria. One of the midwives stated that when she was a Missionary in the Congo and she wouldn't stitch unless it was really severe (3rd degree). It lessened the possibility of infection.

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#10 of 22 Old 01-12-2010, 02:54 PM
 
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Do you have a camera you could take a picture of the tear with to see it yourself? I think if you were able to get a better look at it yourself, you might be able to assess if you think it should be looked at by a professional, or if you're comfortable letting it heal on it's own.

ETA: Congratulations on your new little one!!

jamie. crinkly (not quite crunchy) mama to 3 amazing little girls, an awesome little boy, and a baby girl making her debut at the end of this summer.

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#11 of 22 Old 01-12-2010, 04:06 PM
 
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Is it something that super glue would help with?

DH and I - totally winging life with our four children, DS1 (6.5yrs), DS2 (5yrs), DD (3yrs) and DS3 (1)!

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#12 of 22 Old 01-12-2010, 04:20 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Oohhh those are 2 great ideas. Assuming it hasn't swelled past the point that we can get the edges together I'll have DH take photos after the kids go to bed and see if it's repairable with superglue.

I can't imagine that will feel great but it should only sting for a second LOL.

THANKS!!
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#13 of 22 Old 01-12-2010, 04:49 PM
 
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if it's 1/2 inch or less, it's a first degree. no sense even bothering with stitches. 1/2 to one inch, second degree. I have seen them stitched up, and I have seen the mom be told to keep her legs Closed for a week or so, and it should heal up fine by itself. More than an inch long and then it's third degree and probably does need to be looked at, cuz you want to make sure there are no torn muscles in there.(the perineum is wedge shaped, and the muscle layers go in pretty far...Have your husband measure, but don't pull on it(it may be 2nd degree or less and already starting to heal. My guess that you don't feel anything would lead to that conclusion). But you are probably pretty swollen as well. See if he can measure it with a tape or ruler....
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#14 of 22 Old 01-12-2010, 04:58 PM
 
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I tore, a little, and didn't get stitched (I was borderline between not needing and needing stitching)-- and healed wonderfully. FWIW, it KILLED (first vaginal birth, fast), but I kept my legs together for a while (was mindful of how I was sitting/getting in and out of bed etc) and it healed up well (confirmation from a MW, too). So that is my good story about not getting stitched. Honestly, I think if you couldn't even tell you were torn, it's not that big of an issue. Common sense says that if you tore badly enough for stitches, it seems like you would *know*. But that is just my opinion.
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#15 of 22 Old 01-13-2010, 10:16 AM
 
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How are things now?

BTW...I'm honored that you thought of me and usually have time to comment if I feel I have something useful to say (or just feel chatty! ), but I don't always notice one thread over another. So, feel free to pm me if you want comments on a thread, and I will do what I can, when I can.

For now--how are things now? IME, most tears will heal fine without sutures, even 2nd degree--but there are lots of things a mama can do to help healing proceed well and quickly, avoid infection or any other complication of a tear.
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#16 of 22 Old 01-13-2010, 11:44 PM
 
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1st off congrats on the birth of your new LO! Just wanted to chime in with my 2cents. I am in my 3rd yr apprenticing and have seen quite a few tears, but my mentor on the large leaves things to heal on their own unless a tear has reached down into underlying muscle. The fact that you are not in much pain, I think, is a good sign. The body is phenomenal about healing itself if left to its own devices more often than not. One thing I have seen her use on tears that are "on the cuff": could stand a stitch or 2 but wouldnt be a lost cause w/o them is: fresh seaweed. (I know, I know, but hear me out) Most local health food stores will sell it, and just cut a small strip roughly the length and width of the tear and apply over it. The salt in the seaweed may sting a bit, but she says it heals things up wonderfully. Reapply several times a day as each stips drys out. she read about this remedy on Midwifery Today's website and then implemented it into her own routine. I have also seen her use "liquid bandage" to spray over minor tears, as well as clear nailpolish. HTH!

Blessed Be!
~Shelby~

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#17 of 22 Old 01-13-2010, 11:47 PM
 
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Congrats!! Is there a MW who could check it out? My only experience with tearing was a huge one and I went in for stitches...it took them over an hour. (fortunately a great experience). But anyways, I would still hate to go in if it wasn't necessary.

Mama to expecting Babe 2
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#18 of 22 Old 01-14-2010, 05:41 AM
 
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I've torn a few times in my perineum and never noticed. DH checked after every birth and it was so minor I let them heal naturally.

I agree that if you don't have a lot of pain then it is probably very minor and it will heal on it's own naturally.

Congratulations! Have a Happy Baby Moon!

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#19 of 22 Old 01-17-2010, 05:02 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Murphy's Law sort of visited and while DH was more than willing to do whatever I needed (superglue, seaweed etc) I ultimately decided to leave the tear. Using a camera I determined it to be a 2-3 degree tear based on length.

The birth was (like 2 of my previous) a very quick precipitous labor lasting less than an hour total and with only 2 contractions at the end bringing the head and body down and out. I imagine this didn't allow my body to stretch although I didn't push and breathed through the contractions letting my body do the work. In addition he was an asynclitic presentation which probably contributed also.

I was (and am) in little to no discomfort which even though the tear was long I feel is my body telling me it will be okay.

We live off grid and had a weird fluke of water, hot water and heat issues within 24 hours of the birth and my DH was absolutely wonderful about taking care of me, our 4 children, all household duties and the water issues and I felt that I could live with the tear and didn't need to add that to his list of things to juggle LOL.

Thank you everyone for your replies and helping me process this decision!!! I feel great and I know that in this particular situation I made the right decision for me.

Sara
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#20 of 22 Old 01-17-2010, 10:55 PM
 
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Good news! Thanks for the update.

Well, good news about the tear healing well, in any event--and about the helpful loving dh. Sorry about the water situation tho.

If you are peeing and pooping normally, no smell, ooze or discomfort, then it probably is coming together well. Just don't do any heavy lifting for awhile, and keep it clean. Kegeling may help also.
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#21 of 22 Old 01-20-2010, 11:47 AM
 
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My last 2 homebirths I tore to a 2nd. degree & did not have them stitched. You are past being stiched. If there is a problem you will have to go into surgery later, but it sounds like you are doing well. It is of utmost importance that you rest & keep your legs closed. Do Kegels. No sex untill completely healed. Pat dry when using the potty. Rinse the area w/ a mix of h2o & hydrogen peroxide. Place steeped black tea bags to reduce swelling, itching & overall weirdness.
Your tear will heal from the inside out. My 1st. recovery was way longer when I didn't stitch. It was difficult for me because I kept retearing when I ran around & did too much. Then it fused weird. But that didn't bother me because I knew I would have another baby,I would retear & I would do things differently...which I did. Last baby I took it easy (great excuse for staying in bed) for 2 weeks & I had no problem.
Congrats on your sweet baby!
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#22 of 22 Old 01-25-2010, 01:41 PM
 
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I tore a little on my last birth and used raw honey and condom cubes. It felt wonderful.
How to make condom cubes...LOL
Take a condom and put some alcohol in it- rubbing or drinking- about an inch or so- fill the rest with water- tie a knot in it and then insert it into another condom and tie it like a water balloon also. insert it into a toilet paper tube and put in freezer- a condom slushy to the rescue!

Wife to Dh and homeschooling, mother to DD16  DS12  DS9  DS5  DS3. Due with 6th child in March 2014.

 

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