Thursday, 22 March 2012

Medical Help for the few?

I watched OBEM last night mostly with a smile on my face and the occasional “oh no why?” so lets start with what was really good….I thought the story of Cody was a real positive story about pre-eclampsia. As Billie admitted herself whilst most women have heard about it and know it to be a problem, many are not informed about how bad it can be. It’s a shame given what we know about kangaroo care that Cody and Billie did experience it for the first hold as it would have been an amazing example of excellence but again maybe it was done at another time and we just did not see it due to editing.

The same for the story about the baby with the cleft lip. Brilliant information giving. TV has as the ability to normalise situations (which can be a double edged sword) so by seeing the sweet baby, seeing his lip and how well it was repaired, may go a long way to helping women who are also told their baby may be similarly affected. It appears that Carolyn was induced post dates but we know no more so we cannot make presumptions whether or not it was an informed choice. (note to self add stuff about the evidence and risks of induction of labour) However Carolyn was constantly monitored during the birth. Why? Following birth the cord was cut for no apparent valid reason and baby was immediately removed from his mother. Why?

The midwife who was with Tania I felt did an excellent job of support sitting with her (off the bed) talking and encouraging her. She was however being constantly monitored. Why?

However... cushion hit TV when another midwife gave incorrect information by saying women ”should progress at 1cm per hour” There is NO EVIDENCE of this. This is outdated, discredited information that can cause harm. Some woman will progress faster and some slower and as long as all is well, the clock has no part to play in a normal labour. Once again I would like to mention the Royal College of Midwives campaign for normal birth. If the midwives do not want to read complicated and or deep research papers then the RCM make the evidence simple. I got really excited to see Tania have good midwifery support, sitting on a ball, resting for a while on the bed, then all fours for 2nd stage……then it all fell apart when a midwife (not the primary one) said “lets turn you over” and once again constant monitoring, Valsalva and a shouting match. No need for any of it……she would have done just as brilliantly leaving her alone to push under her own steam. The fact the baby was OP (back to back) just adds weight to the argument that she was an amazing woman who was quite able to give birth to her baby without interference.

Amazing stories, lovely babies and a missed opportunity once again to normalise birth for the majority and show medical help for the few.....

Also published on One Born Every Minute The Truth facebook page

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