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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Against the advice of my doula I did not see a chiropractor before my first birth. I had a tailbone injury in childhood and she thought a chiropractor might help. I was very late in my pregnancy and we had just payed over $1000 dollars on a car problem so I decided not to go.

Well, during labor I indeed had back labor, I'm guessing partially due to my tailbone injury. But now a year and a half later I'm betting the back labor was more due to my baby being ROA. I also had shooting pain down my right leg with every contraction. My midwife said the baby was probably hitting my saictic nerve as he was turning. Well, by the time I was ready to push my leg was numb and I could not support myself. We tried every position imaginable, because I did not want to push being on my back. Well, that's the position I had to surrender to because my blasted leg gave out.
: I then ended up with an episotomy (I'm sure because of the position I was in) and my hip felt out of place and hurt like the dickens for a month postpartum. I was stupid and didn't see anybody about that even though the midwife recommended seeing a physical therapist.

So, fastfoward to this pregnancy.....I found out I have an anterior placenta this time and knew that I'd have a higher chance for a posterior postioned baby this time (although the lady on the babyspinning.com website seems to think that the ROA position is just as bad
). Anyway, I've done all the research I possibly can on the subject and it seems a lot of midwives recommend a chiropractor to help get the baby in the proper position. I mentioned this to my midwife and she didn't say much until I mentioned the siactic and hip pain from the last time....then she said I should definately go! So, I decided that since she thought it would be a good idea to at least try to prevent that again, that I'd give it a shot.

I found one from the icpa4kids.com site for one that specializes in prenatal and have been going since last week. Now mind you I was raised in a family and married into one that think chiropractors are a bunch of quacks, so I've been a bit skeptical. Well, the first appointment the doctor spent the majority of the time trying to sell himself. I was amazed. He basically told me my whole birth story just by feeling my spine and hips. Then he proceeded to tell me that the goal is for me to have less than a 4 hour labor this time! He also said that the last lady who had similar circumstances as mine that he treated had a 16 hour labor the first time and didn't make it to the hospital the second time after getting chiropractic help! I had a 7 hour labor with my first one, so you can imagine what I thought!


Anyway, my husband thinks it's a bunch of huey and I'm wasting money. So, in your experience as a midwife or doula are chiropractors for real when it comes to helping with an easier, quicker delivery? I want to believe, really I do!
Thanks!

Amy
 

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I'm not a midwife/doula/etc, and can't really answer your question, but wanted to comment... I'm seeing a chiro for the first time this pregnancy, and it's done WONDERS for the pain I was having during pregnancy. Now I did not have any problems with my first labor (it was all of 2.5 hours, and baby was perfect position and ready to fly out!), but I was in SO much pain this pregnancy, even in the first trimester. And after a few visits, I was able to walk to and from the bathroom in the middle of the night!!! Before, I had *excrutiating* pain as I tried to stand up, and then walk. My midwife is pro-chiro and thought it was a good idea to go. And everyone around here in the "crunchy mom" community goes to this chiro, pretty much.


My DH is *very* skeptical of chiropractics, and thinks they're all quacks pretty much, but he also trusts my judgement in matters like this, and he is finding the money to pay for the care, as he said that I do need it (it's obviously helping tremendously). He just won't step foot in the office himself.


Good luck, and I hope you don't have the sciatica stuff during labor next time!!!
 

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Hi Metroames,

I think a chiro is a great idea in general for health...if you think about it, all of our nerves go through our spine and therefore something katywampus (sp?) with the spine could cause problems. However, I think the right chiro for you is important...I am skeptical of any practitioner that tries to sell oneself and of someone who is convinced with their care your outcome will be a certain way...esp based on antidotal stories. I think that is kind of presumptuous. I don't think any one of us has that kind of control. If you want a different chiro you can talk to some childbirth professionals in your area and ask which chiro they recommend...tell them your story about your chiro visit and what you liked about it and what turned you off and this may give them a better idea about who to recommend.

I also think that just because you are adjusted...it could very well help a birth and also it could not make a difference in the moment, depending upon other factors...like a nucal hand, or in every woman the cartilage holding the pelvic bones together being flexible from birth hormones to help your baby rotate around and birth which may expose a nerve more to pressure...ironically this is an example of how well our bodies adjust to helping the birth process. (Every baby, no matter what position, rotates at birth to be born...called the 'mechanisms of labor'. You probably know this already.)

: I do not buy into a lot of the posterior, ROA problem positioning stuff because I think it can trip people out of believing that their body and their baby know what to do to birth...we can not expect perfection from ourselves every time but our bodies do know just what to do, most of the time, to deal with these varying positions if we are allowed freedom of movement and a supportive environment in labor...and in your case there may have been things that could have been tried position wise or adjustment for the pain - during labor (or maybe before??) but maybe not - ...but, you had your baby in 7 hours!! and frankly for a first baby I think that is great and efficient, you should be very proud of how well your body works to birth a baby. I am sorry about the pain, yikes!! I am sure you tried things, but I guess the baby just needed to come out to relieve the pressure on the nerve...or maybe it got pinched at one point and didn't recover until way after birth...damaged nerves take a long time to heal. (BTW, I have seen sciatic type pain in birth in people who did receive chiro care so I would not beat yourself up over not following the doulas advice.) As far as episi, I think that was your midwife, not your body? Again, this is just me but I wouldn't cut one unless there were serious heart tone issues or serious shoulder dystocia, was this the case? Is that why she cut one?

I would think about focusing on how well you did on your first birth and finding the correct chiro for you if you think it might help...and having it in place for the post partum if there are issues of pain after the birth too!

And, if it is helpful, many times second births are very different. And if you think, or are worried that the pain might come back...find a chiro that can come to you in labor if you feel this similar situation coming on…which may help and I would try (but it also may not).

I hope my thoughts are helpful; they are just my way of thinking... Best of luck to you...let us know about what happens, if you'd like.
Paige
 

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Hey metroames!

I am a doula, CBE and have been an apprentice MW. When I had my DS 19 months ago I had the same pains that you had. He was ROA, had horrible back pain that shot down through my legs. I was in active labor for 27 hours with my husband, mw and apprentice mw doing hip compressions for EVERY contraction. Pushed a total of 5 hours - in every position known to man but he ended up being delivered with me semi-reclined in husbands arms. I had only gone to see a chiropractor one time with him.

Fastforward - DS #2 was born 8 weeks ago and was a totally different story. I sought out a chiropractor who specialized in the Webster technique. He got me all aligned. My DS was in LOA. The night I went into labor I swore I was never going to. I walked into the bathroom at 9:02 pm to brush my teeth. First contraction hit and I knew I was ready to go. An hour later the MW showed up and I was at an 8. Labored a while longer in the birthtub and she told me I could push when I wanted. B/C of my last experience I thought I would wait a while longer - ha ha ha - baby had other plans. With 4 pushes in 7 minutes he was out - 3 hours from my first contraction. I give my chiro all the kudos. I did have some back labor but didn't need hip compressions to get through them.

With both of my pregnancies I did everything the same - except the chiro. I was a freak about nutrition (a little less out there with #2), exercised faithfully, remained very active, very careful with posture - the ONLY difference was the chiropractor visits. I cannot recommend finding a good chiro enough! It will make such a huge difference. Hope this was a little encouraging!

Oh - and a great book to get is Hands of Love by Carrol Phillips - she's a chiro and talks about the difference one can make in your labor/delivery! It's a great resource!
 

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briefly: did not see a chiropractor during my first pregnancy, despite serious pubic symphysis joint pain. had a 36 hour labor with about 4 hours of pushing. it was long. discovered after pregnancy it probably would have been very helpful to seek chiro care during that pregnancy for the pubic symphysis joint pain and for my alignment and baby's optimal positioning. with this pregnancy, pubic symphysis joint pain began at the end of the first trimester, very different from the first pregnancy when it didn't start until the third trimester. began seeing a chiropractor regularly or as needed depending on the severity of the pain and how it was affecting my life. began third trimester a couple of weeks ago and amazingly, i have only small occasions of pubic symphsis joint pain. baby is still moving pretty freely, most recently doing grandiose vertex to breech flips and back to vertex again. i plan on continuing the chiropractic care through the rest of this pregnancy and in postpartum, and our chiropractor also does infant and child chiropractic and craniosacral therapy so we'll take our new baby to see her, too. i'll have to wait to share any alignment and easier or shorter birthing information...


~claudia
 

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I'm seeing an osteopath to straighten ou my pelvis and so far I can really feel a difference.

My first two children were born very easily but when ds2 was 2 and some years old I was walking in town and was hit by a bicycle. After about 4 months my hips were clicking when I walked and I felt odd. My mum recommended I see her osteopath and she realigned a vertebrae in my spine which had shifted to one side and eased my pelvis which was also twisted.

I saw her once again when I was first pregnant with dd (my third) but not during the regnancy as it is far to travel and we began to find money a bit tight. Dd's never engaged, she settled ROA then ROT and got wedged in my hip even after my waters broke. I went over 40 weeks with her which I felt was odd as my other two had been born at 39+ and I had a very tricky 11 hour labour with her which after a 2nd labour of 5 hours was a real shock. (ROA is considered less than good becuase most babes will turn clockwise in the pelvis to get out so from ROA to posterior to LOA to anterior. Apparently they don't ever really go from ROA to anterior)

This time I have been to a new osteopath at the Uni where I study so its free! She has me all aligned again and has resolved the twist in my pelvis - and guess what this babe is 2/5 engaged and LOA at 35 weeks. I will see her again in 2 weeks time but I feel much more like this babe is ready to go than I ever did with dd.

If you can find someone you are comfortable with then I would say go for it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Quote:

Originally Posted by Paige, CPM
..I am skeptical of any practitioner that tries to sell oneself and of someone who is convinced with their care your outcome will be a certain way...esp based on antidotal stories. I think that is kind of presumptuous. I don't think any one of us has that kind of control. If you want a different chiro you can talk to some childbirth professionals in your area and ask which chiro they recommend...tell them your story about your chiro visit and what you liked about it and what turned you off and this may give them a better idea about who to recommend.
First, thank you for your well thought out response. Yeah, I was a little caught off guard by the antidotal stories. He didn't promise anything, just what his goal would be. Actually, after seeing him 3 times now I really like him and will probably stay. I'm also not that willing to drive much further anyway to another one.

Quote:
...but, you had your baby in 7 hours!! and frankly for a first baby I think that is great and efficient, you should be very proud of how well your body works to birth a baby. I am sorry about the pain, yikes!! I am sure you tried things, but I guess the baby just needed to come out to relieve the pressure on the nerve...or maybe it got pinched at one point and didn't recover until way after birth...damaged nerves take a long time to heal. (BTW, I have seen sciatic type pain in birth in people who did receive chiro care so I would not beat yourself up over not following the doulas advice.) As far as episi, I think that was your midwife, not your body? Again, this is just me but I wouldn't cut one unless there were serious heart tone issues or serious shoulder dystocia, was this the case? Is that why she cut one?
Yeah, 7 hours isn't bad at all! That's why I was kind of freaking about one less then 4 hours! Although, after giving it more thought, this will be my second baby, and if he starts out in the LOA position then 4 hours or less may not be that far off! But, I'm definately not going to expect that. I also expect back pain again next time too, I just hope that I don't get the sciatic nerve pain again! I really need to focus on believing in my body too. I did really well last time, up until the pushing phase, and then I think I gave up because of my leg.

As for the episotomy.....I really wish I knew if was really necessary. Afterwards my doula even said it was necessary, BUT I had only been pushing for one hour and the baby's heart was doing fine. I did not give in right away, but the midwife said that I was not making any progress and I think she was a bit afraid of shoulder dystocia, since the ultrasound a few days prior showed him being over 11 pounds. In my opinion it had more to do with the position I was pushing in. Before I started pushing I was sitting upright in a chair. I started getting the irresistable urge to push, but the midwife wanted to make sure I was fully dialated before I did start pushing. So I let her check me and I had a little lip left. So for the next to contractions she held it out of the way till I was fully dialated. That's when we preceeded to different positions to push in and I ended up on my back. The next contraction after being on my back I didn't feel that big of an urge to push anymore. I believe gravity was working against me....but at the time I thought since I started I'd better keep going. I'll know better this time! The memory of 4+ months of healing from that big o'l cut will give me motivation to avoid that again!

Amy
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thank you ladies for your stories....they are very encouraging.

Quote:

Originally Posted by orangefoot
.... Dd's never engaged, she settled ROA then ROT and got wedged in my hip even after my waters broke. I went over 40 weeks with her which I felt was odd as my other two had been born at 39+ and I had a very tricky 11 hour labour with her which after a 2nd labour of 5 hours was a real shock. (ROA is considered less than good becuase most babes will turn clockwise in the pelvis to get out so from ROA to posterior to LOA to anterior. Apparently they don't ever really go from ROA to anterior)
This is interesting that you mention that your daughter went over 40 weeks and being in the ROA position. The chiropractor told me that it is very normal for malpositioned babies to be overdue. I was 10 days late, which is rare in my family. My mom had me 4 days early and my sister 2 days late, my aunt was induced due to precclampsia so she doesn't count, and my grandma had all her babies at least 2 weeks early. I am so hoping not to go that late this time!

Amy
 

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Metroames,

I think your theory about the pushing and positioning is a good one. BTW shoulder dystocia happens with the symphysis pubis bones and the shoulders; it has nothing to do with soft tissue. It sounds like the midwife was just trained to do episis and therefore felt it was necessary, when really unless there is a serious issue there is no medical reason to do so. I am sorry you had to go through that long period of healing. I wonder why the doula thought it was needed? Usually doulas are more savvy to the latest med birth info? Can you ask her why she thought it was necessary?

And also, I would not call ROA malpresentation; I would call it a variation. Especially not in your case, you 7 hour birther! I should be so lucky with my first in January!


BTW, have you considered a homebirth? ...if you have those babies that quick then you don't have to worry about getting anywhere in time...(I am shameless!!!)
I am sure you have, ignore me!!!

Best, Paige
 

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The idea that this doctor thinks he can "give" you the birth you want if you see him often enough raises my hackles a little. I've seen chiropractic give good pain relief for some SP pain (and some got no relief) and be pretty effective for sciatica.

I see lots of women arrive in labor with a baby that's ROA or, less often, OP. It seems to be a really common early labor position, but after a few hours of contractions, most babies flip right over - I've seen a lot of 3 hour labors that started with an OP baby, and ended with an OA birth. I do think that optimal fetal position has a place, but I think it has become a great fear-motivator for pregnant women, beyond what the original author intended.
With your history, though, I do think that exploring some options is helpful. Will you have access to a labor tub? It can really help if you experience leg weakness again.
Do you know if your placenta is fundal or low-lying? I haven't seen the persistant OP-ness with a fundal anterior placenta (placenta near babies feet when vertex), but have seen it with a low lying anterior placenta (placenta to face when vertex).

Paige - is that an announcement??
 

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This is actually medical fact!!

Chiropractic care during pregnancy has been shown to significantly reduce the length of time a woman labors. First time moms averaged a 24 percent shorter labor, while mothers who have already given birth experienced a 39 reduction reduction in the average labor length, compared to controls (Fallon, 1991). Chiropractic adjustments during pregnancy can also reduce the likelihood of experiencing back labor (Diakow, 1991).

http://parenting.ivillage.com/pregna...,,40lj,00.html

I had chiropractic and massage therapy during pregnancy. It was amazing for my comfort especially in the last trimester. My chiropractor is not a specialist with pregnant women so I can't say that she was doing any special labor shortening voodoo
but I had a 12 hour labor which is pretty good for a first time mom with a nine and a half pounder.
 

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I am not a health care provider. However, I am married to a chiro., have seen a chiro since i was a baby, and my mom saw one during all of her pregnancies. I am very much a believer.

Having said that, there are quacks out there that give chiros a bad name, much like there are quacks in EVERY medical field. You need to find one you are comfortable with and get results with. (sounds like you have)

oh.. my mom had very easy labours, my sister's was 6 hours, and so far my pregnancy is hunky-dory. (let's hope it stays that way) I don't know if this is due to Chiro care or not, but it probably helps.

oh.. and chiro school's first 2 years is exactly the same as a medical dr's. They have to take all the same anatomy, neurology, etc.. classes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks for the replies ladies.


Quote:

Originally Posted by Paige, CPM
I wonder why the doula thought it was needed? Usually doulas are more savvy to the latest med birth info? Can you ask her why she thought it was necessary?

BTW, have you considered a homebirth? ...if you have those babies that quick then you don't have to worry about getting anywhere in time...(I am shameless!!!)
I am sure you have, ignore me!!!
Unfortunately, my doula left the country shortly after my birth so there's no way I could ask her. Personally, I think the episiotomy was probably necessary, because he just wasn't coming out with me in that position. I plan to do what I can to not end up lying on my back again this time AND I've proven myself with a big baby so the midwife better not be nervous, LOL!

I think I would be a great candidate for a home birth, but my husband is venomently against it. Honestly, if he isn't comfortable with it, I probably wouldn't be either, because I feel like I would need his full support to feel safe. But if my labor is too fast to get to the hospital, then so be it!


Amy
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Quote:

Originally Posted by emmabella
This is actually medical fact!!

Chiropractic care during pregnancy has been shown to significantly reduce the length of time a woman labors. First time moms averaged a 24 percent shorter labor, while mothers who have already given birth experienced a 39 reduction reduction in the average labor length, compared to controls (Fallon, 1991). Chiropractic adjustments during pregnancy can also reduce the likelihood of experiencing back labor (Diakow, 1991).

http://parenting.ivillage.com/pregna...,,40lj,00.html
Hmm, a 39% reduction in labor would be a little over 4 hours for me. I guess that ain't too far off from what the chiropractor said. I guess he knows his stats! LOL! On the other hand....4 hours! Holy crap that seems like such a short time!
 

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Keep in mind that these are AVERAGES- some labors shorten even more and some don't shorten as much. My personal, non-scientific hunch is that the REALLY long labors get shortened a lot (like 3 days into 12 hours) but the labors that are already efficient don't have much room to shorten.
 

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In 1995 I was in a major car accident. Among many other injuries, the ligiments holding my pelvis in place were torn loose. I had to go to the chiropractor 3 times a week for 6 months. Without him putting it back into place every couple of days until the ligiments strengthened, I couldn't walk (and I was in college at the time having to walk across campass.) Now I go for a chronic pinched nerve in my neck. When it gets to hurting I go and they make it all better. 3 years after the accident I gave birth to a 9 lb 2 oz boy, 3 years after that a 9 lb girl. I was concerned with the first one and had many discussions with my chiropractor and doctor. Birth went fine. My second one was great though because I had her at home.

Just because your family doesn't believe in them doesn't mean they don't help. It's not like they are the Easter Bunny or Santa Claus. They are doctors with medical degrees. Go, feel better, good luck.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by 1stimestar
Just because your family doesn't believe in them doesn't mean they don't help. It's not like they are the Easter Bunny or Santa Claus. They are doctors with medical degrees. Go, feel better, good luck.
Thank you for this. I can't tell you how annoying it is to me to hear people say they don't believe in chiropractic. most people "don't belive" or think chiros are quacks because they're parroting what other people have said. Most of which leads right back to the smear campaign the AMA carried out for decades until the supreme court made them stop. my dh and fil are chiros, btw, that's the only reason i know this stuff
 

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Every practitioner is different. I found mine to be helpful because being out of alingment made more pain for me. I did not have chiro for #1 and my birth was the same length as the other two. So, I felt it helped for pg, and could not hurt for labor and after baby. Also, having to carry baby #2 and #3 much more than #1 going in for visits helped my lower back ache.
 

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Santa Claus...
That is funny.

My story: went to see chiro in labor after being stuck at 6 cm for about six hours. He adusted my neck (to help with the signals to get oxytocin really flowing?) and my ps pain.
I went home and out ds popped, and I mean popped. Glad I was in a tub of water b/c dh almost didn't catch him!

Yea, I recommend chiro all the time as a doula. I "believe" in the chiro.
 
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