Thursday, October 6, 2011

What's the real deal on biophysical profiles?

I consented to my first BPP after I hit 42 weeks. I was blessed that my daughter and I scored a 10. We scored another 10 just passed 43 weeks.

Regardless of your situation, Suspect Diagnoses Come with Biophysical Profiling by Gloria Lemay, is a good article to read.

New Focus

I can't believe that it's been so long since I've been on here! I've decided that rather than "blogging" here that I will post links to articles with minimal commentary and label them so that there is a kind of indexing. Thus this blog will hopefully become a public filing cabinet of articles. I pray that it helps someone. But if all that this ever does, is just make it easier for me to find a specific article then so be it.

Friday, October 22, 2010

The Myth of the 40 week EDD

There are a few topics that get me pretty worked up when talking about pregnancy. One of them is people who get all riled up about a woman being "overdue" when they are actually just talking about a pregnancy that is post 40 weeks.

My husband has a PhD in a branch of physics and is a research scientist by trade. I only have a liberal arts bachelor's degree but several of my jobs prior to becoming a stay at home wife and mom included medical and public health research. So when it came to our only child that we fought so hard to conceive, you'd better believe that we researched EVERYTHING.

Despite all my reading prior to even getting pregnant (I spent the first year of our infertility journey researching birth), I was still shocked to find out how much of current treatment of pregnant women is not at all backed up by research and in fact much of it is completely contradicted by research. The myth of the 40 week estimated due date is one of those things that is contradicted by research.

This article summarizes nicely the information in this research. Despite our best efforts, we were not able to find any evidence based research that backed up a 40 week estimated due date but we were able to find another study from Ultrasound in Obstetrics and Gynecology 1999; 14:23-28 that once again debunks the 40 week EDD.

You might think, "Okay, but why does this matter?" It matters because in my town women are told from their first OB appointment that it's not safe to go "overdue" and by "overdue" they mean 40 weeks. I'll talk about the safety of going postdate in another post. I'm sure that my town is not the only town in America where women are faced with a mythical line in the sand, in fact with a 1/3 c-section rate in this country, I'd say that my town is probably pretty typical. Recognizing a more accurate estimated due date won't solve all the problems of maternity care today but it is a step in the right direction.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Scar Tissue - If you were IF, you probably have it

This article is SOOOO important! You don't have to have had any major cervical procedures to have scar tissue. I only had two polyps removed and one HSG and scar tissue was a problem for me. Thankfully I had a midwife who knew how to massage it out or else I would have ended up with a c-section. Talk to your providers and if they don't know how to massage out scar tissue, remember that it's NEVER too late to change providers.

The New Pro-Life War

I am devoutly Catholic so when we realized that we were infertile, we knew that certain options were off the table for us. That was freeing in a way as we had to be more creative and really get to the bottom of what was causing our infertility. After about 18 months of actively working on our health, both of us loosing weight, charting, surgery for me, meds and supplements for both of us and shots for me, we were blessed to find out that we were pregnant. You would have thought that that was when the fight ended but that was just the beginning of the fight.

Here in the U.S. we have a about a 1/3 c-section rate and I'm here to tell you that I really think that the devil is behind it. That's not to say that I think OB/GYNs are knowingly in league with him but lets face it most don't realize that prescribing birth control pills puts them in league with him. It amazes me how my friends who are Catholic and formerly infertile fought the fertility 'system' so to speak so hard only to hand over their life and the life of their baby as soon as they got pregnant. And yet I get it too as I know what it's like to not trust your own body.

This is not to say that I'm against OB/GYN's and their interventions, in fact I LOVE my OB/GYN who surgically corrected my body so that I could get pregnant. But seriously folks OB/GYN's and their interventions only belong in at most 30% of births and c-section belongs in at most 15% of births. The WHO statistics show that above 15% c-section rate = women and babies needlessly dying. I wish I had more time to devote to this topic but as it is I'm blessed with a wonderful 4.5 month old who wants attention 24/7 and rarely takes naps. Also, due to a whole slew of breast feeding issues I've ended up an exclusive pumper which takes more time than is even reasonable but I'm committed to sticking with it. What I hope to do here though is post links to articles and research to hopefully help at least one woman not become a statistic.

Last night after Mass someone asked me if my child was born at the local Catholic hospital. When I said no that she was born at home, the man said that I was brave. I chuckled and thought "No the women who give birth in hospitals are brave." I don't want to get too into home birth vs hospital birth as I want to help all women and of course most births in the U.S. happen in a hospital. I pray that someday through speaking out we can change the birth system in the U.S. so that women and babies will be safer when they do go to a hospital. In the meantime, there is a war going on. This is a PRO-LIFE issue as women and babies are needlessly dying.

Side note: Anti-Catholic / pro birth control / pro population control comments will be deleted. Let's keep the conversation on birth.