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Thread: Questions about c-section

  1. #1
    layla Guest

    Default Questions about c-section

    Hi, it looks like I may need to have a c-section in about 4 weeks if my bub doesn't turn around from her current breech position. The doc is not expecting her to turn as she is frank breech (bottom down, legs sticking up) and there is a low amount of fluid around her, so she's pretty well stuck.
    Having had two fairly easy vaginal births previously I am a bit dissapointed at the prospect of surgery, but of course, whatever is best for my baby is what counts. I have loads of questions about c-sections and I'm not due to see my doc for another week so I thought I'd ask you girls in the mean time.



    Was the spinal block/epidural painful?
    When was the catheter inserted, did it hurt?
    Was your partner with you the whole time?
    Do they check that you are fully numb before they cut? (Huge fear on that one)
    How long did the birth take and then how much longer to remove the placenta, sew you up etc?
    How long were you in recovery for and could your partner and baby there?
    When were the drip and catheter removed?
    When were you up and walking?
    Was the bleeding(lochia) heavy/how long did it last?
    What pain relief did you have and for how long?

    Sorry, I know that's heaps of questions but it's all whirling around in my head at the moment and I'd appreciate any answers. 8-[

  2. #2

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    Hi Layla...I know the idea of a c section can be a bit daunting but I hope your concerns can be put to rest with everyones information...and I guess it really does come down to getting your precious lil bubs out safely. What an awkward possie she seems to have gotten herself into..lol

    I had a spinal block and it was not painful. That was the only time that my DH was not with me. They get you to hunch over and do it that way..which is a little uncomfy given the size of our bellys but not too bad. For me the catheter was inserted after the spinal block so I couldnt feel any pain at all..just alot of tugging. They do make sure you are numb before you are cut..that was also a worry of mine..Im a huge worrier..but the theatre staff are great at looking after you. From memory the op is all over very quickly..like within half an hour to 40 mins and all you really feel is a lot of tugging. I was in recovery for about an hour. DH, baby and I got to be acquainted and then DH took bubs up for her first bath. This might be different from hospital to hospital. The time seemed to go really quickly. The drip and catheter were removed the next day..and thats when i was up and walking. Both babies were born by 9am in the morning and I was walking to the shower at 10 the following morning. The midwives are great at helping..and i really took my time. It feels a bit uncomfortable getting up that first time but just remember to do it slowly. The bleeding was like a normal period and had stopped at around 6 weeks with some breaks from around the 3 week mark.

    Hope this helps

    Jo

  3. #3

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    Hi Layla

    Was the spinal block/epidural painful?
    No, not for me. Just a little bit of discomfort when they put the first numbing injection in.

    When was the catheter inserted, did it hurt?
    The first C-S yes, because the silly nurse did it before I got to theatre and it did burn. The second time, no, as they did it after the epi was in.

    Was your partner with you the whole time?
    Yep, except for when they put the epidural in (common practice, I think)

    Do they check that you are fully numb before they cut? (Huge fear on that one)
    Yes, very thoroughly.

    How long did the birth take and then how much longer to remove the placenta, sew you up etc?
    I was finished and in recovery in 40 mins

    How long were you in recovery for and could your partner and baby there?
    About half an hour each time, and yes, Dh and bubs were there too.

    When were the drip and catheter removed?
    The next day.

    When were you up and walking?
    The next day.

    Was the bleeding(lochia) heavy/how long did it last?
    It wasn't heavy, and it lasted for a couple of weeks, then really light for a couple more.

    What pain relief did you have and for how long?
    I didn't have any pain relief when I got back on the ward... it was uncomfortable but not painful for me. I did have a couple of panadol for a badly chewed nipple, but that was about it. But everyone's pain threshhold is different, and you shouldn't be afraid to ask for pain relief if you are experiencing pain. They do offer a wide variety of relief.

    hope that helps

  4. #4

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    Was the spinal block/epidural painful?
    I had a spinal block done it was just a little uncomfortable.
    When was the catheter inserted, did it hurt?
    No did not notice at all
    Was your partner with you the whole time?
    No put DH's cousin was with me the whole time and that helped.
    Do they check that you are fully numb before they cut? (Huge fear on that one)
    Yes they check i was fully numb
    How long did the birth take and then how much longer to remove the placenta, sew you up etc?
    That one i can not answer i think it was 1½hr that included the spinal block as well.
    How long were you in recovery for and could your partner and baby there?
    I was in recovery less than an hour.
    When were the drip and catheter removed?
    The next morning so after 19hrs.
    When were you up and walking? After the drip and catheter was removed.
    Was the bleeding(lochia) heavy/how long did it last?
    The bleeding was not heavy and only lasted 10 days still had some spotting for a while after.
    What pain relief did you have and for how long?
    Only had pain relief while i was in hospital.

  5. #5
    Melinda Guest

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    Hey there Layla, here's the answer to some of your questions!

    Was the spinal block/epidural painful?

    No, not at all. Since my caesarean was an emergency one, I had been labouring for some time beforehand and was in extreme pain from that! When I had the epidural put in, I didn't feel a thing (I was madly sucking on gas for the contractions). The spinal block went in the same site when I was in theatre.

    When was the catheter inserted, did it hurt?

    No, from memory it went in before the epidural too as I lost the ability to go to the toilet myself from all the pressure on my bladder etc! I don't recall it being painful.

    Was your partner with you the whole time?

    Yes, apart from when he got frocked up for the procedure.

    Do they check that you are fully numb before they cut? (Huge fear on that one)

    As far as I am aware, yes! I had absolutely no idea that they had actually started mind you!

    How long did the birth take and then how much longer to remove the placenta, sew you up etc?

    I wish I knew Layla, but I really can't remember exactly. I seem to recall it being around 4.30-ish when I went to theatre, and Jacob was born at 5.04 am. It didn't take long to get stitched back up.

    How long were you in recovery for and could your partner and baby there?

    I was in recovery for around an hour I think as I had a very bad attack of the shakes. DH and Jacob were both with me.

    When were the drip and catheter removed?

    24 hours later - I was in bed up until this point.

    When were you up and walking?

    After the drips, catheter and spinal block etc were removed.

    Was the bleeding(lochia) heavy/how long did it last?

    Yes it was very heavy for me, but the worst of it was probably the first week. It would come and go in gushes as well.

    What pain relief did you have and for how long?

    My spinal block was in for 24 hours as I mentioned, but epidural drugs were administered for 24 hours, but gradually reduced over that period of time so I regained feeling in my legs. During this time I was encouraged to do some small exercises with my legs for circulation etc. After the epidural was taken out, I was given panadeine quite regularly.

    Hope that answers your questions Layla!

  6. #6

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    Layla I will just ditto Melinda on this. Pretty much what she said was how I also went.

    I think your experience will be a little different as I had been labouring for so long that there was no time or energy to be scared. In fact I felt nothing but utter relief that I was having a CS. The main thing I remember was the big smile on my face while having my CS. I think it was a mixture of excitement and pure relief that I was no longer in pain!LOL!
    I'm not sure how I would feel if it was elective. I think very nervous.

  7. #7

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    Was the spinal block/epidural painful?

    It took 4 attempts to get it in, it was a bit painful

    When was the catheter inserted, did it hurt?

    No, they put the catherter in after I had the epidural, a bit embarssing

    Was your partner with you the whole time?
    Yes, he stayed right by my side amzing he faints at the sight of blood but he was great

    Do they check that you are fully numb before they cut? (Huge fear on that one)

    I felt the cutting and freaked out and they quickly topped up the epidural

    How long did the birth take and then how much longer to remove the placenta, sew you up etc?

    From the first incision to the time dd was delivered about 5-10mins, the sewing up was about 30-40mins

    How long were you in recovery for and could your partner and baby there?

    I was in for a long time because I had a bad reaction to the anesthetic, dh and bubs was there for a while until I went into shock.

    When were the drip and catheter removed?

    The next day


    When were you up and walking?

    Next day, not by choice though the midwifes force you to get up to prevent clotting

    Was the bleeding(lochia) heavy/how long did it last?

    Not as heavy as if I had a varginal birth it lasted about 2 -4 weeks (can't really remember that)

    What pain relief did you have and for how long

    I only had panediene and it was really not enough, I was still having it 4 weeks later

    I just thought I should add that I had an emergeny c section and my experience was very bad. You are having a planned one so I have heard they are a lot more easier to recover from as your body has not had to go through labour. Good luck what ever happens. Remember the inportant thing is a healthy baby and mummy at the end of it[/b]

  8. #8
    layla Guest

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    Thanks heaps for your responses girls.
    It's great to get some first hand opinions.
    I'm still nervous but you have helped!

  9. #9

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    Was the spinal block/epidural painful? Not at all... I was having contractions during the time, so I didn't notice that being painful at all.
    When was the catheter inserted, did it hurt? I didn't feel it because it was after the epidural was placed
    Was your partner with you the whole time? Yes, except when he went with Matilda for 5 minutes to do the apgar & weight and he got the first skin to skin with her.
    Do they check that you are fully numb before they cut? (Huge fear on that one) They didn't with me because we had a problem with Matilda & my blood pressure and they just had to go then & there...I was numb within 5 minutes though (sorry...)
    How long did the birth take and then how much longer to remove the placenta, sew you up etc? 20 minutes
    How long were you in recovery for and could your partner and baby there? I was in recovery 30 minutes and Matilda was bf the whole time, she went straight on my bb as soon as we got into recovery. DH left 5 minutes earlier to set up the room & get changed
    When were the drip and catheter removed? I removed the drip myself 8-[ a few hours post c/s, the catheter was removed at 5 am the next morning (c/s at 6pm) and the drain (to collect blood) was removed at 6pm that next night.
    When were you up and walking? a few hours afterwards, around 2am I went stir crazy and ripped out the drip and jumped out of bed and into the shower...
    Was the bleeding(lochia) heavy/how long did it last?I bleed for 2 weeks heavily and then for 2-3 more weeks light.
    What pain relief did you have and for how long? For 3 days I had brufen & panadol and then after that just panadol.

    HTH!

  10. #10

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    Was the spinal block/epidural painful? Nope, I had it done earlier in the day & I was having contractions at the time.

    When was the catheter inserted, did it hurt? Nope, didn't feel it cos I already had the epidural in.

    Was your partner with you the whole time? Nope. When he got into the surgical gear & then he had to wait until they made the first incision. He went with Zander for weighing, injections etc & then came back when I was ready to leave recovery almost an hour later.

    Do they check that you are fully numb before they cut? (Huge fear on that one) Yup.

    How long did the birth take and then how much longer to remove the placenta, sew you up etc? Not entirely sure 8-[

    How long were you in recovery for and could your partner and baby there? About an hour & they were only with me for the last 15mins or so.

    When were the drip and catheter removed? Cathetar about 16hrs after, drip was 3 days later as they were worried I had an infection so I was getting IV antibiotics.

    When were you up and walking? C-Section at 1.20am, walking at 11.30pm.

    Was the bleeding(lochia) heavy/how long did it last? Very heavy for 2 weeks & then lighter for another 6 weeks.

    What pain relief did you have and for how long? Morphine injections x 2 on the day of the c/s. After that it would have been Panadeine Forte, but I'm allergic to codeine so I had something else (can't remember the name) for 2 days. Then nothing.

  11. #11

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    Was the spinal block/epidural painful? No not at all, it is a strange sensation, it was the local that stung a little.

    When was the catheter inserted, did it hurt? Not at all as it was inserted after the spinal was put into place.

    Was your partner with you the whole time? Yes during the procedure, only time he left was to get into the lovely party outfit and this was before I was wheeled into theatre, they waited for Mark to come back before taking me in. Mark also went with Matthew to be weighed etc while I was in recovery for 2 hours.

    Do they check that you are fully numb before they cut? (Huge fear on that one) No not with me, the aneasthestis did say to me can they start now, I didn`t know what to say, he then said it`s okay they have already statred and your baby will be here soon.

    How long did the birth take and then how much longer to remove the placenta, sew you up etc? I looked at the clock at 5.05pm, this was before the first cut, Matthew was born at 5.15pm, I was sewn up etc by 5.45pm.

    How long were you in recovery for and could your partner and baby there? I was in recovery for 2 hours as the spinal went too hight and they can`t move you into post natal as the midwives can`t keep a close eye on you like they can in recovery, they said the spinal was still a bit high but I`d be ojay to go back to the ward as I`d only seen Matthew for maximum of 2 minutes, so no Matthew and Mark weren`t with me,.

    When were the drip and catheter removed? The next day, about 22 hours after the c/s.

    When were you up and walking? After they took the drip and catheter out, so the next afternoon - 22 hours later, I wouldn`t say walking more like hobbling.

    Was the bleeding(lochia) heavy/how long did it last? I had two big gushes after the c/s in the ward, it gave me such a fright, not sure if it is normal or not. I bleed on and off for just under 6 weeks, some times I`d go 2 or 3 days with no bleeding then it would start again.

    What pain relief did you have and for how long? I had pethidene via the drip, then when the drip was taken out I was given panadeiene forte, then went onto 1 panadeine forte and 1 codene, I was on that for 1 week then panadol for about 2 on and off, mainly just at night time. for the panadol.

    I had to have a c/s in the end as I was diagnosed with CPD, luckily they found out before labour had started.

  12. #12

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    Was the spinal block/epidural painful? I didnt feel it at all, at worst I would say it felt like a mosquito bite. The IV in my hand hurt more than the epidural did! I was so surprised because I was freaking out about it!

    When was the catheter inserted, did it hurt? It was inserted just before the op once I had my gown on. Did not hurt at all, just a bit uncomfortable.

    Was your partner with you the whole time? not during the epidural, we did ask but the room was too small. our idiot Dr. started the op without him, but was there for majority of it, was not with me in recovery room, was with Jackson.

    Do they check that you are fully numb before they cut? (Huge fear on that one) - Yes they do, with me they did it with a block of ice, they run it up your leg right up to your neck to see how far the anaesthetic has gone, mine was right upto my chin.

    How long did the birth take and then how much longer to remove the placenta, sew you up etc? the whole thing took about 15 miutes, about 5 of that was getting bubs up, the rest was stitching up etc.

    How long were you in recovery for and could your partner and baby there? I was in there an hour on my own

    When were the drip and catheter removed? do you mean drain? i didnt have a drain, the catheter was removed the next day, i think i had my hand drip in for a day and then just the plug for another day fr medication.

    When were you up and walking? the next day i showered and dressed. the sooner you are up the better, recovery will be faster.

    Was the bleeding(lochia) heavy/how long did it last? my bleeding has only just stopped at 6 weeks after. was heavy for first three weeks, quite light after that.

    What pain relief did you have and for how long? i was just on panadene forte that was the only thing that worked on me aside from the morpehne which made my nose crazy itchy and i made it so red scratching it! i had panadene forte the whole hospital stay and took some home with me ehich i just had at night time.

  13. #13

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    Hey Layla, good to see some of these answers for myself as well!!! The only thing I can comment on is the catheter which I had inserted after my last "look and see" op (back in August 04). It was put in to relive pressure on my bladder - I could not pee after the op - and it was not at all painful, even without any pain killers (ie epidural or spinal block). So IMHO, the catheter shouldn't hurt at all even if they put it in before doing the epi or spinal. Mind you, you have to lie with your knees up and dropped to the sides (highly feminine pose!!) for them to get it in.

    So is Sarah a definate for a c-section.

    I can't believe that barring any further problems withmy blood pressure and urine protein, I will be in for a caesar and be a mum in just over 2 weeks!!! OMG!

    Hayseed

  14. #14
    Debbie Lee Guest

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    Hi Layla,
    I thought I would chuck my 2 cents in for you. As you can probably see, everyone has had a very different experience. Try not to get too freaked out by it all. I am sure you will be fine!

    Was the spinal block/epidural painful? Not at all. I was having contractions at the time so I was a little distracted but I found the epidural to be no more painful than a regular blood test. Sitting still was a little difficult but it shouldn't be a prob if you aren't going thru contractions at the time.

    When was the catheter inserted, did it hurt? After the epidural. It didn't hurt, it just felt odd. Neil said the look on my face was priceless when they put it in. I said "Things aren't meant to go up THAT hole" lol. My first wee afterwards stung a little but I was fine after that.

    Was your partner with you the whole time? Yes. The only time he was away from me was to "suit up". He was even with me in recovery - many of the others have stated that they weren't allowed to have hubby or baby with them in recovery which I think is quite mean and nasty. Neil was at my side the whole time and the staff were fantasic. They kept everything very light and funny and explained everything which I think is very important. Nothing was a surprise.

    Do they check that you are fully numb before they cut? (Huge fear on that one). Yes they do. They used ice to check if I was numb. They put it on my cheek to demonstrate how cold it was then put it on my legs. I could feel it but couldnt' feel the cold. It just felt like someone was touching me.

    How long did the birth take and then how much longer to remove the placenta, sew you up etc? The birth was very quick. 10 minutes if that. The stitching up took about 30 minutes. That was the worst part for me because I was feeling very ick. The epidural made me very shakey and I actually threw up during the operation (because I had had a glass of water). That 30 minutes dragged something chronic!

    How long were you in recovery for and could your partner and baby there? I kind of already answered this one. But i was in recovery for about 15 minutes if that. I gave Gabby her first breast feed and Neil was with me the whole time. We were even screened off for privacy from the other patients recovering from surgeries. It was funny because they had all been under a general so they were all groggy looking and I was sitting up bright as a button. As soon as they checked my BP etc. I was wheeled up to my room.

    When were the drip and catheter removed? The next morning. I wanted the catheter out straight away but I had to wait until about 10am. It was sooooooo good to get it out.

    When were you up and walking? 11:30am the next morning (the c-section as at 4:30pm the day before). It was a little uncomfortable but not overly painful. Having a shower was awkward but I think more from fear of hurting myself than actual pain.

    Was the bleeding(lochia) heavy/how long did it last? Nowhere near as heavy as a natural birth. Mine lasted about 6 weeks but the last 4 weeks it was very, very light. Probably the last week was only little bits every now and then. I just wore panty liners for the last part.

    What pain relief did you have and for how long? All kinds of lovely drugs! I had a slow-release pain killer, panadol, voltaren, and some other one that I can't remember the name of. They keep it right up to you and all you have to do is ask - even if you just feel the slightest tinge.

    My advice would be to not over-do it. I felt great in the hospital but I would really notice more pain when I walked faster than I should have or didn't take my time getting in and out of bed. By the time I got home, I didn't require any more pain relief.

  15. #15
    *Megan* Guest

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    Hi layla

    I thought that I would copy and paste some answers for you as I had a c-section nearly 3 weeks ago now...

    Was the spinal block/epidural painful? I had a spinal block and it wasn't painful - I was really nervous about it - but it was honestly fine!
    When was the catheter inserted, did it hurt? I didn't feel a thing when it was inserted as the spinal block was already taking effect. I didn't feel it coming out either which was good!
    Was your partner with you the whole time? Adam didn't leave me for a minute (except when I asked him to go with the baby after he was born so that he could tell me all of what was happening. When they were stitching me up, Adam went to recovery with the baby which is also what I wanted...
    Do they check that you are fully numb before they cut? (Huge fear on that one) Oh yes! The spinal block took a little while to take effect and I was determined to feel NOTHING before they started to cut!
    How long did the birth take and then how much longer to remove the placenta, sew you up etc? I was in for the surgery at 10.30am and the baby was born at 10.44am. This included all of the time it takes to administer the spinal block etc so it is really quick. It probably took about 20-25 mins to stitch me back up
    How long were you in recovery for and could your partner and baby there? Yes - again everyone was there...I was in recovery for about 20mins. I attempted breastfeeding in recovery
    When were the drip and catheter removed? The next morning at my request
    When were you up and walking? At 6am the following day - I was also really committed to getting up and having a shower. I had physio at 10am the same day also.
    Was the bleeding(lochia) heavy/how long did it last? I stopped bleeding by the time I left the hospital - it wasn't heavy for me at all - but I started bleeding again on about day 15 and it is still going!!
    What pain relief did you have and for how long? I took tramal (highly recommend this) and voltaren until I left the hospital on day 5. I took a couple of tramal on arriving home as I felt fine and then went and over did it.

    I had a great expereince with the c-section. I went into the operation quite fit and totally committed to a good recovery...

    All the best Layla - will be thinking of you

    Megan

  16. #16
    layla Guest

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    Wow, thanks heaps girls.
    The main thing that has surprised me is that, just like natural birth, everyone's experience is different!
    It's great to get all this info!

    Megan, I'm putting my name down for a birth like yours!

    I'll find out tomorrow if and when we are going to be having the c-section. (I'm pretty sure Sarah is still breech, but I guess there's still time for her to turn.)

  17. #17

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    I thought I'd put in my 2 cents worth!

    Was the spinal block/epidural painful? Nope. I was having contractions at the time, and was totally preoccupied by them. I was also sucking on the gas. It was very tricky trying to stay still, and rolled up in a ball on my side with a huge tummy (and the contractions of course!)

    When was the catheter inserted, did it hurt? It didn't hurt...but it did feel pretty weird. Mine was inserted as soon as they decided to do the c-section, and after my initial epidural had worn off - before they topped it up for the procedure (I am sooooo upset they let it wear off!)

    Was your partner with you the whole time? Tim was only away from me when he was getting all dressed up in his theatre outfit. He sat with me during the surgery (at the head of the bed), and I asked him to follow Hannah when she was whisked off for all her checks and injections etc.

    Do they check that you are fully numb before they cut? (Huge fear on that one) They did with me. The doctor kept tickling and pinching me to see how numb I was. I was numb up to my neck.

    How long did the birth take and then how much longer to remove the placenta, sew you up etc? It took about 15 mins to get Hannah out, and about 20-25 mins to sew me up afterwards.

    How long were you in recovery for and could your partner and baby there? I was shaking like a leaf (really violent shakes) and spent and hour in recovery. I have no idea where Hannah and Tim were. They came in to see me on the ward an hour after the delivery.

    When were the drip and catheter removed? They continued the syntocin and saline in my drip for a further 12 hours or so. My catheter wasn't removed until some ungodly hour in the middle of the night (Hannah had been born at 510am) when it disconnected itself from the urine collection bag. I felt it happen, pinched off the end of the catheter with my fingers so I didn't flood the room, rang for the nurse, who came about 15 minutes later (took her time!). She just removed the whole thing then.

    When were you up and walking? The next day.

    Was the bleeding(lochia) heavy/how long did it last? The bleeding was heavy for the first 4 days, then it became very scant. I am still wearing a pad (4 weeks later) because I get the occasional drip.

    What pain relief did you have and for how long? Before they removed my epidural, they put a dose of morphine down it. I was given a suppository (hmmmm... pleasant!) of Indocid, which I have to say was amazingly effective. I had two of them a day for the 5 days in hospital, and took some home - I used them on and off when the pain got bad at home. I also used panadol.

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