having a baby at U of M in Ann Arbor? - Mothering Forums
Indiana, Ohio, Michigan > having a baby at U of M in Ann Arbor?
ee_lime's Avatar ee_lime 05:34 PM 09-16-2008
My new neighbor is expecting her first baby mid october. She said she is planning on going to U of M in Ann Arbor to have her baby because that is where she has been going for prenatal care. She says she wants to do everything as natural as possible, sooooo I thought I would ask what your guys experience with that L&D is. Anything particularly good or bad about it?

I am so excited to have a cool neighbor...she already has all of her cloth dipes ready and she even wants to learn to babywear!! :

MaryLang's Avatar MaryLang 05:38 PM 09-16-2008
I believe U of M has their own Midwives.
ee_lime's Avatar ee_lime 05:41 PM 09-16-2008
Originally Posted by MaryLang View Post
I believe U of M has their own Midwives.
hmmm ..she didn't say anything about midwives though, so i would assume she is with an ob
courtenay_e's Avatar courtenay_e 11:12 PM 09-16-2008
I'd ask. It's my understanding that the midwives tend to be the most supportive of natural birth. Though I may be wrong. don't work out there very often! Stacia is the one who'd know best. OOoooohhhh STACIA!
Defenestrator's Avatar Defenestrator 12:31 AM 09-17-2008
Are my ears burning?

As a natural-birth-friendly hospital UofM is getting better and better. I think in general they try to accommodate parents' wishes and that the nursing staff is supportive of natural childbirth.

That said, many if not most of the OBs really aren't (or at least they have a bias toward active management and intervention). The midwives might be one of the best hospital-based midwife teams in the region, but the doctors are a total mixed bag in terms of bedside manner and the practice groups are huge (I think there is something like a 1 in 20 chance of getting your doctor for your birth). There are some really good apples in the bunch (and some of the best are amongst the residents and fellows, oddly enough) but some are really annoying. The majority of the care is provided by residents, which is great if you get a good one, but annoying if you have something big going on in your labor and the resident keeps running out of the room and then running back in saying that some mysterious attending doctor figure has declared that x is what you need to do. Only stomping your feet and making a fuss pulls the person actually making the decision into the room with you to discuss your options.

The short version -- the midwives are great, but I wouldn't see a doctor there for a normal pregnancy.

HTH, Stacia
jandc_hammond's Avatar jandc_hammond 11:26 PM 09-17-2008
I had my daughter at U of M appx. two years ago and had a wonderful experience in terms of recovery and newborn care (I saw an OB and had a medically necessary c-section, so I don't have any direct experience with the midwives). They nurses and OBs went out of their way to encourage breastfeeding and provided a lot of support in that area, despite initial problems, jaundice, and weight loss. They also encouraged me to keep my DD in bed with me (skin-to-skin contact) to facilitate breastfeeding. I loved that they made clear that vaccinations were the parent's decision (I was not well-informed on vax issues at that time, but they really got me weighing the pros vs. cons and supported my decision to selectively vax).
Defenestrator's Avatar Defenestrator 01:08 PM 09-18-2008
What a nice story!

I think that the staff at UofM go out of their way to make the c-sections good experiences for the moms. I have been in on a couple of c-sections recently and the nurses have come and immediately draped the babies across the mom's chest so that they can have skin-to-skin contact. They also don't separate babies from moms in recovery unless they have to.
Fay's Avatar Fay 01:51 PM 09-18-2008
My friend G. went to U of M with a birth plan. A nurse said, "You know what we call mothers with birth plans? C-sections."

I know many stories of friends who had unnecessary interventions at U of M. For example, my neighbor had a natural birth there, and a resident was concerned that the placenta wasn't being delivered quickly enough, so he pressed down hard on her abdomen to try to get it pushed out. My neighbor was shocked and angry at this rough, improper treatment. U of M is a teaching hospital, the purpose of which is to demonstrate as many medical interventions as possible to the medical students. I personally believe that this is the hospital's top priority, not patient care.
Defenestrator's Avatar Defenestrator 02:19 PM 09-18-2008
See, my experience has been very different there when working with women who are working with the midwives. They have 130 or so nurses there, or so I'm told, but when I go there with clients using midwives we get the same ones again and again -- they're the ones who really want to work with women planning natural births. Also, when I have been at births with midwives there have never been medical students as part of the care -- they don't want to see boring, normal births -- they're off in the surgery rooms or at high risk births seeing something "interesting."

There's good and bad that come with teaching hospitals -- the good: they do more evidence-based practice in general than private practitioners and the attending doctors are competent and held to a high standard. the bad: sometimes you get someone who hasn't found his or her legs yet and they act more aggressively or with less flexibility or competance because they don't have the experience (residents -- the students really aren't allowed to do much).

I've seen a number of local hospitals -- Providence, Beaumont, Botsford, St. Joe Ann Arbor, St. Mary, Huron Valley, Hutzel, Henry Ford. So far, as long as a midwife is doing the care, UofM is my favorite. For high risk families too.
Cinder's Avatar Cinder 02:46 PM 09-24-2008
I'm butting in from Denver, Colorado.

All 3 of my kids, Janelle who is 6, Kincaid who is 4 1/2, and Travis who is 13 months were born at u of m in ann arbor. I had the perinatologist/high risk group of doctors out of the taubman center for both Janelle and Travis, and the midwives out of the east ann arbor office with Kincaid (with a brief stint of dual care with peri's while I was hospitalized for 2 months).

With Janelle things did NOT go how I wanted them too, but even 6 years later looking back on it I'm not sure what I could or would of changed. My water broke way too early, I didn't go into labor on my own, which they were ok with just keeping me in the hospital for up to 2 weeks to let her mature more, but then I started running an unexplained fever, so they induced. It took near 60 hours of pitocin induced contractions, 6 hours of that spent pushing, for her to be born, somewhere around 48 hours I got an epidural. Then she needed diuretics and her stomach/lungs suctioned, and then around 12 hours she still hadn't swallowed so she had to go to the nicu for a short while... She came back to me later that same night, but she had to stay in the hospital for quite a few extra days. And this right here is what would make me choose u of m every time (well, not this time, since 18 hours is a long drive to a hospital ), they also allowed me to stay in the hospital with her, refusing to discharge me till she was discharged. For what it's worth she was 5lbs 9ounces, she lost 17 ounces from diuretics and nothing more really, we brough her home at 4lbs 8ounces...and she nor I suffered no long term effects from the horrible birth experience.

Both Kincaid and Travis were natural, well, with Kincaid I had IV antibiotics and phenagran (I had hyperemesis all 39 weeks with him), and I had pitocin in my IV AFTER he was born, but that's it, and I had nothing with Travis. Both were also full term with no issues after birth.

Some other things I really liked... They don't do a "bath" for the newborn till they have proven they can keep up their body temperature on their own for a certain # of hours, so for Janelle this was like 4 days after birth, for Kincaid it was like 12 hours after birth, and for Travis it was around 20 hours. They let me hold both boys on my chest for as long as I wanted after birth (except travis started grunting and so I asked them to take him earlier, but they probably would of even if I wouldn't of requested...he was ok after a few minutes) and they allowed the cord to pulsate (but they wouldn't do this, or donate cord blood, or bank cord blood, for a baby born before 37 weeks, so it didn't happen with Janelle). They don't take babies to a nursery ever, and the encourage co-sleeping. They were perfectly fine with no vaccines and no vitamin K shot (with Travis, not with Kincaid since he was induced do to severe unexplained bleeding from me or Janelle since she was a preemie, but that's just vitamin K, none of the had any vaccines in the hospital and no one questioned that).

One issue I had, and only after Caid was born, they never pushed or suggested a circumcision, but it was like they never bothered to write on our chart that we had said no...we had every med student, ob, resident, and pediatric urologist in the hospital poke their head in just to ask if we planned on circumcising or not. But we weren't even asked once with Travis, so I really think it was our nurse forgetting to record it during the pre-delivery questions.

ETA: I think her name was cheryl, but my nurse with Travis was the absolute best nurse ever. I think she had 6 kids, and all of them except premature twins she had at home... she got me a birthing ball, and she held my hands and talked me through contractions...and when I started pushing she got the midwife to come in since my doctor was off doing something else. And she had my dh go get her so I didn't have to let go of her hands...she was just wonderful!
bdoody11's Avatar bdoody11 04:14 PM 09-26-2008
Originally Posted by Fay View Post
My friend G. went to U of M with a birth plan. A nurse said, "You know what we call mothers with birth plans? C-sections."
My nurse at U-M did not anything of the sort to me. My birth plan was also posted up multiple places in our room (by the staff). Of course, I was 8cm and in transition when I got there so maybe she knew not to mess with me!

I had a very good experience at U-M. I used the midwives out of the East Ann Arbor clinic. I'll preface my comments that I was only in the hospital for 2 1/2 hours before DD was born, but I did stay post-partum for the full 24 hours and change.

- Very respectful of my wishes-- no IV, no hep B shot for DD, no pain meds
- I never had any doctor interaction, except for the young ped residents who preceeded to examine DD and then put her diaper back on wrong. But no ob at my birth.
- Very respectful to my doula. She was very welcomed (a non-issue, actually).
-Very breastfeeding positive. I was having trouble latching and I had the post-partum nurse and lactation consultant help me frequently.
- Put the baby right on my chest after birth, waited to cut the cord, etc. They did do the newborn exam away from me (in the same room), but DH went with her and I was being sewn up anyway.

- I didn't end up knowing the midwife who caught. I was a little disappointed at this.
- Monitoring- Because I came is so close to delivery I ended up being monitored the entire time. I had indicated inteminttent monitoring in my birth plan. I think it changed the position on pushed in (I was also pretty exhausted by this point so that may have played a part as well).
-Just general hospital stuff, not really specific to U-M. The monitoring afterward, being woken up all the time, and just being in a foreign place.

That being said, I'm looking a homebirth next time. There is nothing wrong with U-M, but it's still a hospital!
MacKinnon's Avatar MacKinnon 05:09 PM 09-26-2008
Originally Posted by Defenestrator View Post
I've seen a number of local hospitals -- Providence, Beaumont, Botsford, St. Joe Ann Arbor, St. Mary, Huron Valley, Hutzel, Henry Ford. So far, as long as a midwife is doing the care, UofM is my favorite. For high risk families too.

Stacia- Did you ever visit McLaren in Flint? I had wonderful experiences there with both of my births but my midwife, Jane, has since left. I would love to hear how someone thinks UoM compares to McLaren! Sorry to but in to this thread but we are starting to think about a third and want to know our options!
Mama2A's Avatar Mama2A 11:13 PM 09-29-2008
I had a very positive experience at UM for my pregnancy, labor and emergency c-section!

My doctor throughout the pregnancy was Vanessa Dalton- and she was empathetic, calm and empowering during the entire journey. My labor nurse was amazing, informative, patient and an advocate for me. My unplanned c-section was scary to deal with but the nurses held my hands, doctors and residents talked my husband and I through the process, answered questions, and showed a lot of kindness when I was nervous and shaking. And best of all, in my opinion, the doctors and nurses all warmly greeted my daughter when she entered the world and made kind remarks to her and about her as I was being sewn back up... it's a long process to have to wait through to then get to hold your baby, and a celebration in the meantime was just what I needed.

Recovery was also very positive at UM. Although you get a lot of residents making an appearance during the stay they are passionate about trying to relay the correct information and following through with any posed questions. Breastfeeding and room-sharing was expected and encouraged and the recovery nurses made sure I was always completely aware of what was happening with my body and what to expect.

Overall, it was a joyous event!
Mama2A's Avatar Mama2A 11:15 PM 09-29-2008
this was a duplicate post... sorry
ee_lime's Avatar ee_lime 11:19 AM 09-30-2008
She is seeing the midwives and not an ob!!! :
SMR's Avatar SMR 06:08 PM 10-02-2008
I had two births at U of M.. both unplanned cesareans.. I used the midwives for prenatal care. I found the midwives, nurses and doctors all very knowledgable and kind, esp. after the birth of my son a few weeks ago.
UrbanMomma's Avatar UrbanMomma 09:57 PM 10-02-2008
I have to put in my experience with U of M and yes, their midwives. This was seven years ago and after three previous vaginal births...

I was brought in a day before my EDD and told by u/s guesstimate that my baby weighed over 10 lbs and was transverse. I was told babies DO NOT turn that late in the game and was scheduled for a csection the next day.
When I arrived the next morning for my very dreaded csection I was prepped and given another u/s. Low and behold my baby was HEAD DOWN!!! I asked to be unhooked from the IV and stated I absolutely did NOT want a csection. Suddenly everyone turned on me and became very short with me. The nurses brought in the MW on call who proceeded to tell me because of my babys size he could DIE if I tried a vaginal birth!!!

Yes, this woman actually said those exact words to me. Die and baby in the same sentence upset me greatly and I reluctantly allowed the section. My beautiful 8lb 3oz son was born absolutely healthy shortly thereafter.

I would never, ever have another baby at U of M after that experience. I really feel I was bullied into an unneceserean by an impatient team of docs, nurses and MW's at U of M.