Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Lots of Stuff.... Plus, My First Placenta!

I can tell when I need to get blogging.... it's when the number of tabs open on my browser climbs past the 20-something zone. And when my husband starts complaining - "Why do we have so many tabs open on our browser?" It's because I have to save them to blog about, of course!

But, as usual, I have zero time for blogging. So here goes another stream-of-consciousness blog entry - a little bit of everything!

First of all, in birth news - I encapsulated my first placenta! Or rather, my second, as I did my own, but I don't usually count that one as "official" because I had so much help. This one was 100% on my own, and it was easier than I expected, and a ton of fun. I did it to help out a friend who couldn't take this client due to being on vacation, and I'm glad I did. I want to do more! However, if I ever get into the business myself, I shall be offering only raw encapsulated placenta - cooking a placenta sounds both unnatural (what animals do you know that cook their placentas?) and rather disgusting. So there you have it!

Speaking of placentas, on one of my favorite new blogs, I found this great article - check it out:

The Placenta: Essential Resuscitation Equipment

In other words, knock off the premature cord-clamping, people!!

Also, another favorite blogger of mine (and personal friend) blogged recently about placenta medicine - this is my new article to send to people who are saying "Why???" Here it it:

Placenta Medicine: Why Do It?

In Arizona birth news, this article came out in our local paper recently, and it includes a brief interview with a doula friend of mine, Althea. Love seeing doulas getting in the news!!

Doulas Offer Support, Encouragement During Childbirth

I found this set of articles quite randomly while surfing the web - it is a mama's account of her (very recent) vaginal birth of twins. It's not a homebirth or a pro-natural-birth account, but it is definitely interesting - especially in a day when most twins are automatically funneled into cesarean:

The Birth, Part I

The Birth, Part II

I especially loved how her doctor handled Baby A's birth - this was great!

"She gave some instructions to the people in the room (there was over a dozen people there, I’m not exaggerating) and then she gently told me, “Okay Molly, whenever you want to push, just take a deep breath and push. You’re gonna see your babies soon.”

Loved that.

And, for our head-banging moment of the day, an article on CNN:

Ripple effect seen from rising C-sections in first-time moms

Actually, the article itself is really good. It examines the factors behind our absurdly high cesarean rate, namely, extremely high c-section rates in first-time moms followed by abysmally low VBAC rates. The article concludes:

"Carol Hogue, a maternal and fetal health expert at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, was on the NIH panel. She strongly believes that moms-to-be need to be better educated before they have their baby. "C-section itself is not a benign thing," says Hogue. While many people may no longer view Caesareans as a major operation, she says women need to remember that there are risks for a mother because it is still major surgery, which can include complications with anesthesia and scarring. 'The process of labor helps the baby survive," Hogue adds.

"Just last month, ACOG reaffirmed its guidelines that VBAC is a viable option and urged physicians to counsel women who have had one or two previous C-sections to consider delivering their baby naturally.

"The study concludes that if fewer women were induced, if better guidelines for the timing of Caesareans existed and if women were better educated about their ability to deliver a baby after a surgical birth, it could help lower the number of C-sections in this country."

Don't you love how "naturally" means "anything less than a cesarean" nowadays?

Anyway, the head-banging moment comes not from the article, but, as is often the case, from the comments. Try a couple of these on for size:

From someone who was probably trying to be a jerk:

"I speak for all husbands when I say that a C section is great for us. We don't have to be traumatized that a human came out of where ummm we like to go into."

And then a (believe it or not) serious comment from a dad whose wife chose an unneeded elective cesarean:

" It seems barbaric to us that doctors still allow women to have vaginal births with all the risks that are involved (vaginal ripping or tearing or purposeful cutting by the doctor, The infection that can result from it, long strenuous painful labor, umbilical cord entanglement, ect...)."

Oh. my. goodness. That is wrong on so, so many levels. Rather than go into it, I'll just continue the head-banging.

A lot of the commenters bring up an extremely valid point - that OBs, like other doctors nowadays, are pressured into practicing backside-covering medicine rather than evidence-based medicine simply because they are often sued up one side and down the other whenever they don't. It is a deeply complex issue, and one that needs serious addressing in order to turn western hospital birth around.

Speaking of hospitals, did you know that Disney has a hospital? It does! Read all about it here, as well as Dr. Fogelson's comments on how this hospital could (and possibly should) be used as a model for hospitals on a larger scale - rather than a pleasant exception to the rule

Healthcare “Onstage” at Disney’s Celebration Health

And lastly, loved this unassisted birth story - a breech!

The Unassisted, Surprise Breech Birth of Serenity Danilyn

I think there were more, but it's time to wake up the kidlets! Happy Wednesday, everyone!!!


  1. That is interesting VBAC info!

    I was happy when ACOG announced those guidelines. In the article I read though it still recommended that VBACs happen in a facility that can do surgery if it becomes necessary. :(

    I came across your blog while researching VBACs in Arizona. I'm in Tucson and hope to have a VBAC for my next birth (my first birth was the epitomy of an "unnecesarean"). However apparently none of the birth centers do VBACs - do you know if there is a law against it in AZ? If no birth centers can or will do it, is it legal for a midwife to deliver a VBAC in a home? I really want to avoid a hospital the next time around if possible. I appreciate the info!!

  2. Oops, Cara! I'm so sorry it's taken me so long to get back to you! My email is currently down, so I don't get these notifications unless I physically go back and look for comments.

    Here's the scoop on VBAC in Arizona:

    - Homebirth midwives (CPMs) cannot legally attend VBAC at home in Arizona at this time.

    - You might try a naturopathic doctor - they can legally attend VBAC. Anne-Marie Palzer (sp?) is a DNM who does homebirths here in Phx - you could email her for more info or to find colleagues.

    - Two birth centers have just opened here in Phx. The first, Babymoon Inn, is staffed by a CPM and thus cannot take VBAC. The second, Blossom Birth Center (or something like that) is staffed by an OB/GYN, a CPM and a CNM - so I consider it highly likely that they would take VBAC. You could definitely email them to ask them.

    - Some women have gone over the border (to CA or other states) in order to homebirth VBAC (HBAC).

    My best piece of advice would be to join the Arizona Birth Network yahoo! group and post your question there - there are tons of birth professionals there who know a lot more than I do!

    Best wishes! Let me know if you get this!

  3. Thank you Diana. I will check into the forum you mentioned. I did contact Blossom Birth Center and they are sadly not going to go VBACs. :(

  4. Oh, bummer! I was sure that they would! I wonder why on that one. I definitely hope that the forum gives you more answers - I'm sorry I couldn't be of more use. VBAC is such a sticky issue right now, despite ACOG's recent admissions. Hopefully it will straighten out in the future. Blessings!

  5. Thanks for sharing my birth story on your blog!

  6. Tanya - you're welcome! Congratulations!!! :)


I love to hear from you! All kind and thoughtful comments will be published; all inconsiderate or hurtful comments will be deleted quietly without comment. Thanks for visiting!