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Pregnant with CD. Do I really need a c-section?
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Pregnant with CD. Do I really need a c-section?

Hi, I have Crohn's disease and my GI & OB drs. have recommended c-section.  I am willing to follow their advice, but I did want to reach out to other moms with CD to see whether they opted for c-section or vaginal birth, and whether they had any complications with CD thereafter.  I would really like to avoid major surgery if at all possible.
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I have had two children and I didn't have a c-section with either one of them and I had no complications. I felt great with both of them during my pregnancy as well as during birth.  Shortly after each birth I had flare ups but managed to get them under control.  I am not sure of your full situation but I wouldn't see why you couldn't have the birth the way you wanted if you are in a healthy state.
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Hi Mini,

Why are your doctors talking about c-section if your CD is not flaring up?  I don't see why you wouldn't be able to have a normal delivery if your CD is doing well. At the time that I was expecting, I was wearing two colostomy bags and my doctor was still going to let me have a normal delivery. Question your doctors again and find out why they're opting for a c-section.  Make sure your doctors are not suggesting that option out of convenience for themselves.
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I had 2 c sections with both children.  I had several fistulas rectal and vaginal.  They were quiet at the time but both the ob and colon surgeon did not want or recommend vaginal birth.  So, if your Crohn's involves any type of perianal disease, go for the C section.  
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mimi,

That is major surgery and I have had two.  I would not recommend them as they could cause more problems later, like scare tissue ( adhesions).  that could complicate the CD.  I would recommend starting a natural child birth and then go from there.  Drs are doing too many c-sections right now and babies are having more and more troubles at birth because of that.  If you can get around it I would.  Especially if you have never had a normal birth.  It is the greatest most natural thing.  As a mother of 3 healthy kids please do yourself a favor and opt for the normal birth and if there are complications with the baby then you will be at the hospital where you need to be for a csection if need be.  But also don't induce let it come naturally. OK.  Good luck dear. Happy healthy baby to you.  
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I hope this is of some help to you. I have 4 children, 3 where "natural" births, my last was a c-section. I was diagonised w/ Crohn's nearly 20yrs ago, when I was 16. I had ZERO complications with the first 3 babies, my Crohn's seem to actually be in a remission state. When I was expectiing my 4th..all heck broke loose! I was in & out of the hospital every 2-3 mths it seemed. However, my Crohn's wasn't the reason for the c-section, it wasn't a scheduled one, it was an emergency one. The only extra steps my OB took was to give me a boost of Pretnizone (sp?) during labor. Made me feel ALOT worse, but it apparently worked. All & all, I would have skipped the c-section all together is given the choice, the recovery was a NIGHTMARE! I would ask if there is a specific reason they want to do the c-section & "because you have Crohn's Disease" isn't an acceptable answer. If they won't give you another reason, I would look into getting a new OB. Unless you are activelly having trouble w/ your Crohn's, your OB shouldn't even need to consult your GI, nevermind the GI having to much of an imput on your delivery. I know having your first baby can be scary, but don't be afarid to ask questions & demand answers...good, reasonable answers. Not ones that will make the OB's schedule easier. A good OB will have no problem answering any questions you have, matter of fact, they will actually respect you more. Remember, it's YOUR baby & YOUR birth "plan". For the most part you are in control.
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi,

I am pregnant too, and also have Crohn's disease too. As has been noted by someone else here, vaginal birth can make perianal disease (ie, abscesses and fistulae around the vagina or anus) much worse, even if it is not active at the time of the birth. You didn't say if you have perianal disease or if you have had surgery on your actual rectum, but both these things will make you more likely to develop/reactivate your disease in the perineum or at the anus if you have them. There is a lot of information about this on reputable medical websites and there seems to be good consensus on it.

If, like me, you have never had perianal disease then a vaginal birth is a safer choice because the C-section could add to scar tissue/adhesion problems in the abdomen - I already have these problems from previous small bowel surgeries. Also, for those of us on immune suppressants, it is harder to heal from a C-section than from a vaginal birth. Using a doula and pain meds could help keep a vaginal birth more relaxed too, and prevent tearing and thus, the need for more healing.

Keep in mind that it is not always a choice - many women unfortunately need emergency C-sections. I realize that you had your baby a your ago, but I wrote this for other people, like me, who are looking for answers to these questions. Can you update us and tell us how the birth went?
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