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Negative effects of Epidural?
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Negative effects of Epidural?

My baby is due end July/begin August.  I have heard nothing but praise for the epidural and requested it for this (my third) baby, (first two were born without, but I don't see what the point is in suffering all those labour pain when its not necessary, they are not beneficial to me or baby!) so thought I'd opt for the edpidural (if they have time to give it to me) The midwife did nothing but try to put me off it by saying, the muscles in the pelvis go to sleep and won't turn the baby, the labour itself will be extended in time, there would be more risk of tearing etc.  in fact, I don't think she had a positive thing to say about it! I was really p'd off and asked her why so many prenant women recommended it then if it was so bad, to which she replied women of today, their pain barriers and thresholds were too low! I still insisted that I wanted it as an option if I chose, but does anyone have any idea on whether or not the points she was throwing at me were true or not?  She seemed to think that as I'd done it twice before, without pain relief, entirely by chance and definetely not planned! I'd be ok this time, bearing in mind my last was 10 years ago and now I'm more scared this time than I was the first two!! Gillian X
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I didn't have an epidural with my first but I did have an intrathecial (sp?) which numbed me until I dialated to 10....then I felt everything.

10 years later.......I had ds without!!!!! NOT BY CHOICE!!!!
And I did fine because my labor went so quickly.

What she told you are probably valid points but there is no reason for you or anyone else to suffer through in todays medical world....as a "midwife" she would rather see you go all natural but I know that some doctors will "talk a woman into having one" just so she has some strength left to push with.
Best of luck
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Avatar_n_tn
I had two epidurals and they were sent by God. The labors perhaps did last a little longer for me, but who cares if you can't feel the pain? Some women say it makes their labor go WAAAAY faster because they are so relaxed and no longer tensed up. There are no big risks associated with epidurals. Good luck!
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With my DD I was in labor for 25 hours NO EPIDURAL.  With my second just 5 months ago I DID have the epidural and I had my baby in 7 hours.  They induced the second time and they kept upping the Pitosin and I could not feel a thing until it was time to push.  GO FOR THE EPIDURAL.  It is so funny how I was TOTALLY against those things until I had one.  Now I tell everyone to take it if they can.  It really is not bad.  Feels like a bee sting.  Good Luck & Take Care.
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Avatar_n_tn
I have nothing but praise for the epidural! With my first they gave it to me early on and my labor still went by quickly. 8 hours for my first. I may had felt 5 contrctions at the most when they gave it to me. I dozed off and woke up to be told it was time to push. He came out and i never felt a thing! With my second I had to  be injected 2 times because the first one never took right. Even with the second one I could feel my contractions but did not feel him coming out( which was the thing I was worried about !) so even with being injected 2 times I still have NO complaints. It really did not hurt when they did it. I just felt pressure. Good Luck! Danielle
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Avatar_n_tn
for some people the epidural actually speeds up labor.

my friend, with both her first and second child, would tense up so bad with every contraction that she was keeping herself from dilating....once she got her epidural she relaxed and was able to let the contractions do their job...she would be fully dilated within an hour of receiving it.

i personally think it is a wonderful thing...and i don't think you should let her bully you into not getting it.
good luck
~nanci
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi. With my first i walked into the hospital at 8cm/100% and didn't know i was in labor. I thought they were going to send me home. I called hosptial b/c of the small amt of "clear leaking fluid" (amniotic fluid) that i was having. I got so scared of everyone coming in the door asking me how is the pain was. It wasn't that bad and thought it must get worse and i better take the epidural! Well, i started pushing in an hour 1/2. I felt nothing! It took 1 1/2 hours to push her out. My DR said if i had not had the epidural she would of been out in 20-30 mins!

My point in saying this is ...i don't know what to do with this one! I'm due in Aug and keep going yes/no drugs! So, I know what you mean...what do you do? All these thoughts go through your head and you feel torn with what to do. It is interesting to read everyone's experience. I'm afraid this one will be really painful unlike the first!
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Avatar_n_tn
I had an epidural with each of my daughters and they were very difficult epidurals.  My spine is formed in a way that made it nearly impossible for the dr. to introduce the catheter.  That being said, I would still want a third (not that I'm having another child!).  For my 3 month old's birth, I had to be induced since I was 12 days overdue.  When you start adding pitocin into the mix, you get fairly fast and furious contractions.  My epidural was finally inserted at 1pm and she was born at 2:45pm.  I am not sure how I would have coped with those contractions - I felt a lot of pressure and watched them climb higher and higher on the monitor.  

On the other hand, I have always wondered about the link between epidurals and poor breastfeeders.  Both my daughters were not great on the breast and even though I tried everything, I had to supplement.  I have read some articles about that - but I also know tons of people have epidurals with no breastfeeding issues.  

I think it's can also be a wait and see situation.  Leave yourself open for the possibility for one, and see how it goes.  Especially with a third child, you might fly in there and give birth before you can say anaesthetic!!!  

Either way, Good Luck!
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Avatar_n_tn
I notice that all these posts are in favour of the epidural so I think I should pipe up as I disagree...  Let me first say that it is absolutely a personal decision (which should be a highly informed decision) and I don't judge anyone.  I have many friends and family that have had epidurals or other drugs, and I fully respect their choices in their own contexts.  I realize that my own choices and point of view are marginal in our culture.
I had my two girls naturally with a midwife, and worked hard all through both pregnancies to prepare physically and mentally for the births.  This prep, along with fantastic support, is crucial to dealing with the pain.  Both deliveries went very well - no picnic, of course - but no complications and two truly beautiful, intense experiences. I wouldn't have done it any other way.  It's and odd feeling to express clearly, but here goes - I would have regretted not feeling anything.  This is a subject that runs deep and I could discuss for hours, which I won't do here.  
There ARE however complications associated with the epidural, which are curiously hushed up in our medically-dominated society.  It's more common than one would think to have an epidural administered incorrectly - a poor job can cause problems running from a 3-day migraine post-birth (as happened to my mother 32 years ago) to a brain aneurism (aneurysm) (as happened to my cousin 5 years ago - not fatal but almost).  These problems do not occur when it's done right, of course, but they are risks that are rarely discussed.  Secondly, an epidural increases the risk of labour slowing down, which in turn requires pitocin, which is a whole other can of worms.  Epidural is associated with much higher rates of episiotomy, use of forceps and vaccuum.  Also leads to higher rate of c-section when labour completely stalls.  Finally, I find it strange that our culture lectures us incessantly about not consuming a drop of alcohol or a tylenol for 9 months and then encourages us to get doped up for the birth - don't think that the baby isn't affected by the drugs !
Make the choice that feels right for you, but either way, ask all the questions, to be comfortable with your decision.  Good luck !
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Avatar_n_tn
With my first 2 children,I went totally natural[no drugs of any kind].With my 3rd child,I had an epidural and it was wonderful !! I had no feeling from the belly to my toes,but I was able to feel like pushing at the end.My last labor,2 weeks ago,I got an epidural and It wasn't done properly.I was only numb on 1 side of my body,and It wore off within an hour and a half.I felt every contraction from 8cm to 10cm,and I wasn't a happy camper to say the least.Epidurals are wonderful ,when there performed correctly.Just my 2 cents...Take care
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EK1-

I was wondering what you had read about the Pictocin.  I was given it with my first and second.  My ankles swelled up like elephant feet.  I couldn't wear my normal shoes for weeks after labor.  My calves and feet ached as well.  

Everyone Else,

The decision is a persoal one.  I have had all my labors naturally due to cocerns EK1 posted.  My first I had back labor which was killer.  I wish I would have known about going on my hands and knees daily for 5 min. a day 1 month before labor to turn the baby to prevent this.

My second wasn't back labor so things were much easier.  I could feel more pelvic pain though as the baby came out.  With the first I didn't feel that because the pain was so intense in my back.  I wish the doctor's could just numb that area with novicane like when getting teeth worked on.  That would be great.  Does anyone know if that exists?

I wish you well with your decision.
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Avatar_n_tn
Please, everyone who is considering an epidural and/or the use of pitocin, take a look at these web sites:

http://www.infantparenthealing.com/parentsknow/epidurals.htm

http://www.gentlebirth.org/archives/bbepirsk.html

http://www.kimjames.net/Labor%20Side%20Effects.htm

"The baby is known to participate in the timing and onset of labor and this is now known to be necessary for optimal human development. During birth a baby and mother MUST BE ABLE TO FEEL one another, to stay focused and aware of one another throughout the labor and birth. Inducing drugs and anesthesia interfere with this process."

"When undrugged the woman and baby are able to move together in harmony. The baby
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Anti-drug before birth of my 14 month old.  Got to hospital and was 3 cm about an hour later was very nauseous and in pain.  Couldn't stand it and caved, asked for epidural.  Did tear (could have been the 9 lb baby though).  Labor only lasted 9 hours start to finish.  Pushing was a breeze and seemed like it was very brief.  Breastfeeding wasn't easy at first but believe that was a learning curve for both of us.  Turned out to be a breastfeeding pro after practice.  Do I want to know what would have happened had I not take the drugs?  Maybe, but not badly enough to go back and do it all over again au naturel.  Still remember my anesthesiologist, Roger.  Do believe I proposed marriage to him with husband in the room.
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Avatar_f_tn
i had two epidurals, 16 and 17 years ago, i now suffer sciatica which i will have all my life. i might add i love my kids and i guess worth the pain, but if i could turn the clock back i would not take the epidural, your sciatic nerve is the longest nerve in your body and not to be messesd with
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