Wanting to hear other mom's experiences if anyone is still active in this group!

Allison - posted on 03/14/2010 ( 3 moms have responded )

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Hi! I had a severe PP hemorhage 3 years ago with my son, and have never met anyone else who had one. So I am just curious if anyone still feels like sharing their experiences on here! I want to have another child someday, but still wary of this happening again, and wondering about what causes PP hemorhage...



I had a planned, assisted home-birth with 2 midwives, and hemorhaged immediately afterward. My midwife gave me all the usual drugs - pitocin, methargine, cytotec - but nothing worked, so I went to the hospital ER in an ambulance. That was REALLY slow and I almost died there, but finally got an OB after 1.5 hours and he gave me hemabate and did a "deep uterine sweep", which worked. My hemoglobin (I think?) was down at 4.5 out of 12-15 normally, so I was pretty close to going into shock. I lost about 60% of my blood. Anyway, I had 2 units of blood transfused and went home after about 3 days. Then after 2 weeks at home it happened AGAIN, and I was back for more blood transfusions and 4 more days in the hospital and a D&C, which finally worked. They never found anything, though, and my blood was clotting like crazy, so they said the hemorhage was just due to lower uterine atony - just didn't contract like it was supposed to afterward. My milk didn't come in for about 5 days after the birth, when I was at home and finally relaxed (and skin-to-skin) with my son.



My son was 9.5 pounds, and almost 3 weeks "overdue", so I'm curious if this could have caused the hemmorhage. Anyone else know what caused your hemmorhage? Even if not, what were the circumstances around the birth?

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Elaine - posted on 04/18/2010

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Hi Allison,
Sorry it took so long to get back to you, but my 48 year old brother-in-law suffered a stroke and was airlifted to a hospital in St.Paul. He is being woken up from a drug induced coma, and we are hoping for the best. Once again one is thankful for the medical care we have available to us in this country.
Back to your questions, Frankie was born one week early(there was a full moon that night, so I am a believer in this wives tale). She was 7lb 3oz. A healthy full term baby and pregnancy with no complications. As far as family history goes I have no knowledge of anyone having a post partum hemmorage. If there is, it was not well documented. I am trying to find out how my great-grandmother died. My grandma NEVER spoke about it to her 15 children. She was 17 when her mother died. When my now, 77yr. old mother was younger she did remember her aunt telling her that there was a baby next to great grandma in the bed when she died. But great grandma did have 10 children so it could have been anything that caused her death, and the baby just happened to be placed near her. Who knows? I will have to do some more searching, because now I am curious.
When I had my first two girls, age 21 and 19. There weren't really any pain medications they would give you for labor. Basically drugs to make you sleepy. I never really understood that part. So I did the natural birth feeling every pain there was. For my last one, I went for the epidural. I can tell you want to experience the whole thing and I admire it, but by the time Norah came around I was like I don't have to feel all that pain great! I felt it was a beatiful birth. My husband and my two older girls were there to watch their sister come into the world without mom screaming her head off.
You sound more like my sister who went natural for all three of hers. She was much like you with her third baby, although not attempting a home birth. She basically labored at home as long as possible. Perhaps, your midwife would allow you to travel to the hospital right at the end. My sister waited, and waited and waited, because she didn't want to be all hooked up , but still wanted to give birth in a hospital just in case.
She said the nurses were basically taking their time until they checked her and she was dilated to 10. She said it was like the keystone cops movies, nurses grabing carts and things aflying. She turned over in her bed on her knees and dropped him out. She said it was much more comfortable that way. Perhaps your midwife could call ahead and let them know to expect you so they would be a little more prepared.
Hopefully you can work out a birth plan with your ob and midwife so you can be both comfortable and safe. I wish you the best. Elaine

Allison - posted on 04/03/2010

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Thanks for the amazing story, Elaine! I hope that I will be able to have another someday soon, but haven't started trying yet. I also felt very thankful for the life-saving treatments after all the blood I lost. I think I have a bit of an anxiety disorder over it, still, because I really start shaking every time I talk about it. I do want to have another but don't want to risk leaving my son w/o a mommy :(



My placenta was also intact, and nothing found in the D&C, so it is so curious to me. I am wondering if there are ways to lower risks of this happening. How far along was your daughter and how big was she at birth? I also wonder if it runs in families, as my grandmother had one after her 10th baby (!) and my aunt (who I resemble in EVERY way) had a hem after her 6th baby. My aunt was at the hospital when she had hers, just 5 years ago now, but they "forgot" about her for so long she almost died there :(



I will definitely have an OB throughout my pregnancy and birth next time; I had a great one this time, but she went on maternity leave when I was 7 months prego. She was very supportive of my home birth and I was really healthy, so then I had only with my midwife (who gave even better care, really).



Still, I am very conflicted about where to give birth next time, as I loved the home birth for many reasons, and it does lower so many risks versus hospital birth. If my labor progressed smoothly, I would really rather stay home than go through the stress of getting to the hospital. And my midwife was equipped to handle any minor emergency (which she did wonderfully, according to the OB who treated me) - just not big ones. We got to the ER in plenty of time, but waiting there for a doctor was nearly deadly. Same thing second time around (grrr....). So in the hospital WITH and OB attending is definitely the best place to be in case of emergency, but I still think it is a terrible place for labor. I can handle the work of giving birth, but not sure I can handle the stress of doing labor and birth in a hospital without stopping the progress of my labor! It's great for emergencies, but for birth I felt I needed to stay relaxed for such a long time in order to keep it moving. My mom stalled out as soon as she got to the hospital with her last 2, and it led to a serious overdose of pitocin by a careless nurse that almost killed her :( That was just 12 years ago, so I was there at the time. So understandably I have a very serious mistrust of hospital staff, and strangers, and don't want to be arguing my way through birth since it can really slow/stop progress.



Also, I would never want to give birth laying down, it is proven to be the very worst position for it, but if i find the right care provider, maybe that's not required at the hospital? I also have friends whose baby contracted a terrible hospital-strain bacterial infection there, which I want to avoid if at all possible. Also, I did choose not to be induced at 2 weeks past due, because baby and me were totally healthy, but I want to learn more about the risks of going over-due before my next one, so I can be sure to make the best decision possible.



Sorry for such a long post, it weighs heavy on my mind almost every day, still. Definitely thankful for many aspects of modern medicine, and very wary of others, so I will have to find a satisfactory middle ground to find some peace for myself and safest conditions possible for the next time around :)

Elaine - posted on 03/24/2010

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Hi Allison

I had post partum hemorrage 6 days after the birth of my second daughter. It was a traditional vaginal birth in a hospital. Looking back on it now, I know that I didn't bleed much after the birth. But six days later I woke up in the morning and passed a huge (silver dollar size) blood clot. Then began to bleed as thought having a period, nothing major. Well, later that evening about 10:00pm I felt "wet". I went and sat on the toilet and it was as if the water faucet was turned on except it was blood. A quick call to the OB unit at the hopital , I was told I should come in and get checked out. I feel I was young and so naive. Duh, I was bleeding profusely! My husband drove me to the emergency unit and when they couldn't stop the bleeding I was given an immediate D&C. I'm not quite sure how that causes the bleeding to stop, but thankfully it worked. My doctor told me a few things:1. I had lost at least half my blood volume. I was not given any transfusion, so spent 3weeks at my mothers so she could help take care of me, my new baby, and my 2year old. I was extremely weak.



2. Had I lived a 100years ago I would have died. I don't know about you but this has stuck with me. My little baby is now 19years old, and the thought of never being able to watch her or her older sister grow up still sticks with me. My husband was in his first year of law school at the time and I can't imagine him going to school and being widowed with a newborn and two year old. The fact that someone actually saved my life amazes me to this day.



3. They did pathology on the placenta and said it was all intact. Supposedly when a piece of the placenta gets left behind it can cause a hemorrage. Mine was all in one piece so I never got an explaination as to why this happened. It just did.



What can I say. Moms can and still do die giving birth. It isn't always text book as they say. I would definately consult an OB for your next birth. It took me 16yrs to have another child after my hemorrage. Now, that wasn't the only reason, but it definately was part of the reason. I can't pretend to know why you hemorraged either, but I don't think to many OB's would let you go three weeks over. We just have to be thankful for the doctors and nurses who saved our lives.

Elaine

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