Worried about limitations for VBAC

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-20-2011
Worried about limitations for VBAC
Wed, 01-26-2011 - 1:11pm

I just came from my OB appointment, and I am discouraged by some of the limitations that seem to be placed on having a VBAC. I really want to do things as naturally as possible and want to just let the baby and my body do its thing. I know that things don't always go as planned, but I want to give nature as much of a chance as possible and not jump to conclusions that maybe not be necessary. Because I was induced a week early due to an apparently unfounded worry from an ultrasound, I ended up not progressing and opted for the epidural, which I blame for the increased heart rate of the baby, which led to the c-section I had.

This time around, I am determined to make use of all possible natural methods to help increase my changes of having a natural labor and hence the VBAC. But at my last two OB appointments, they have mentioned things that are discouraging me. First, because I had a c-section, they would want to monitor me and the baby at all times, via an internal monitor (don't have wireless at this hospital). Which means I can't walk the halls laboring, and I am assuming I can't jump in the shower. I definitely can't sit in the tub or have a waterbirth, as they don't even have those types of facilities.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-12-2004
Thu, 01-27-2011 - 2:25pm

Hi again,

This board has been kind of slow lately.

Community Leader
Registered: 07-23-2004
Thu, 01-27-2011 - 9:26pm
I'm sorry you had such a bad appt. It sounds like your dr isn't as supportive of vbacs as he claims. To place an internal monitor, they have to break your water in order to screw the electrode into your baby's head. A hospital that can only monitor using internal monitoring sounds like they aren't very patient friendly. Is there another hospital you can attend?


iVillage Member
Registered: 06-17-2007
Tue, 02-08-2011 - 8:14pm

Ask them what their VBAC rates are. You want the percentage of women who have a VBAC after a c/s (regardless of whether they sought a VBAC or not) and the percentage of women who try for a VBAC and succeed. From my research, if the first number is less than 25% and the second number is less than about 65%, you'll know you've got a hospital that's big on repeat c/s. It sounds like your OB certainly is.

So what if they think less of you? They don't have to go through the recovery after surgery while caring for a newborn. If it were me, I'd start asking questions fast. As in, why must I schedule a c-section early? Or heck, I'm 30 weeks. Why am I even talking about scheduling now? What's going to happen if I don't schedule a c-section to your specifications? Will you refuse care if/when I do go into labor?

Of course the answer to that question will be no. But it makes no sense at all that your OB is saying a VBAC is safer, but only if it's absolutely 100% guaranteed to succeed. The stats just don't back that up, unless you find yourself in a dangerous situation that could apply to *any* vaginal birth. No vaginal birth is guaranteed to succeed, so to assume ten weeks out that it will be so risky you might as well just plan the c-section seems to be just another way to sabotage you.

As others have said, I'd reconsider this OB if you really want a VBAC. Sounds like you're going to get sabotaged no matter what you do.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 01-20-2011
Sat, 02-12-2011 - 7:31pm

Sorry for the absence, a lot has been going on these last few weeks, and there has been a lot of drama. But I wanted to thank all of you for responding and making me feel more confident. Since I posted, I have checked out the ICAN site as well as a few others and feel even more strongly about how I want this birthing experience to go (or at least try to go...I know things can change). I have found so much information that mentions that continuous monitoring has no added benefit in a VBAC and only increases the chances of repeat c-sections due to lack of mobility and possible false readings. So I know I don't want to be forced into that. And I also don't want to schedule a c-section early, I want to wait until I need one. And I am definitely going with a doula.

Since then, I have found a doula that is absolutely wonderful and that is perfect for me...she LOVES VBACs and has done many of them. I have also talked with my OB and while they are willing to work with me as much as possible, they say the hospital has a strict policy of requiring constant monitoring and that they feel it's necessary for me as well. WHich I was not happy to hear. That particular OB was the one I had talked to first and was okay with scheduling a c-section at 41 weeks, though, so that was a positive thing. So...it's really the constant monitoring that is the issue. My doula suggested another OB that she has loved working with that seem more open, and I have a meet&greet scheduled with them in a few days. Already, just having spoken with one of their nurses and the receptionist on the phone, they seem far more willing to work with me on things. So most likely I will be switching OBs (and hospitals). It's further away (25 minute drive, maybe more with lots of traffic, as opposed to 5 minutes), but I dont want that to play a factor in where I labor.

So, here's hoping that the meet&greet goes well, and that I am making the best choice (hearing the first OB mention maternal and fetal death and the importance of the constant monitoring DOES make me nervous...and I am a paranoid person) for myself and the baby.

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-18-2007
Mon, 02-14-2011 - 3:49am

Just wanted to add y two cents in. I recently had a VBAC (2 weeks ago) and had to go through all of this with my doctors. Grants, things work differently in England, there are still some similarities.

First off, you are hiring the doctor's for their service, which means you have the say so in the end. If you don't want continuous monitoring, then simply refuse. They give you the information (which is skewed to protect them, mostly) and you make the decisions based on what they tell you. Do your research on VBAC (which it looks like you have been doing) and also on natural childbirth. . Fabulous idea going with the doula! I had one as well and she made all the difference.

Stand your ground. If you know the real risks, you already know the risks of repeat section is higher than VBAC. Sections have their place, but are widely overused.

Oh, also, with the dates, the World Health Organisation states a normal pregnancy goes from 37 to 42 weeks, so no one is over due until 42+1. Push off the scheduled section as long as possible, if I were you. Again, you are hiring their service and you have the say so. IF you don't do what they suggest, it's not like they're going to come to your house and force you to hospital (as long as you're not directly putting you and baby in danger, which you are NOT doing).

Good luck with the meet and greet with the new OB! I hope it goes well and that they're much more encouraging for a VBAC.

Love Megs

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iVillage Member
Registered: 05-27-2008
Tue, 02-15-2011 - 10:03pm

I think I could have written this post... up until the point I am at least.

Community Leader
Registered: 07-23-2004
Thu, 02-17-2011 - 10:40pm
Yay! I"m glad you found a great doula!! Having supportive people around you is the most important thing!

Let us know how your meet and greet goes. I can't wait to hear all about it!


iVillage Member
Registered: 04-16-2007
Fri, 04-01-2011 - 7:57pm
There is nothing that says you have to schedule a repeat csection..... I personally wouldn't even schedule it. Did that with my last baby.... but when my labor started, it went so fast that even though they were trying to prep me for a section, they couldn't move fast enough to do a csection and she was here! LOL
As for the scare tactics, most of it boils down to money and malpractice insurance.......

Single Mom of 6 beautiful children and 3 angels........
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