February 2014 Moms

C-sections: Epi vs. Spinal block

My first DS came after a long hard labor and eventual CS. I had two epidurals - first didn't work so hot and I was in A LOT of pain.. Second epi was better and I got some rest, but still could feel some stuff. They decided to use the epi for my CS and as they were cutting into me and eventually trying to get DS out, I hollered for them to stop because it felt like they were tearing my guts out. I don't know if this was actual pain or all the pressure I was feeling, but it was VERY rough and painful. They decided to knock me completely out and some of the staff was not the most professional. I was pretty upset and still a little traumatized today.

Fast forward to today's 37/38 week appointment. I expressed my concern to the OB (she was my OB with DS1 but was out of town the week he was born) about the epidural and it's effectiveness on me, then told her the story about my first CS. All the while in tears. She assured me this time would be different, and that they use a spinal block. I sure hope she's right! I told my husband if that antestesialogist was there, I would walk out...

So, those with planned RCS what did they use on  you? An epidural or a spinal block.

Re: C-sections: Epi vs. Spinal block

  • I had a spinal. I could feel pressure and pulling, but only very mildly. There was no pain at all during the procedure.

    I'm so, so sorry about your first experience. <3
  • Mine wasn't a RCS, but it was scheduled, not an emergency.  I had an epidural and I didn't feel anything aside from some pressure.  

    I'm sorry your first experience was so bad.  Hopefully this time will be better.
  • I just had a c-section with a spinal. It was great, and they were very careful about checking to make sure I couldn't feel anything first! I hope that eases your fears!! Good luck!
    DD1 - Evelyn Riley - 9/30/11
    DD2 - Charlotte Avery - 1/27/14




  • I just had a c-section with a spinal. It was great, and they were very careful about checking to make sure I couldn't feel anything first! I hope that eases your fears!! Good luck!
    Thanks everybody!!

    Gosh I sure hope so! My OB assured me they would thoroughly check me over to make sure I don't feel anything. DH told me I just need to focus on this child and let go of what happened last time. Easier said than done! He's right though.. Just don't tell him that!!
  • I've had a spinal with my last two C-sections. I could feel some tugging/pushing, but nothing painful. I'm sorry you had such a horrible experience with your first. I'm really glad your OB is trying to help you have a better experience this time around.
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  • One more for a spinal block; I felt nothing but some pushing and tugging, no pain until the block wore off in recovery.

    On a related note, I've heard that c/s after a long labor is just generally more difficult for a number of reasons and can come with more recovery pain. Here's hoping your planned c/s is a better experience!
  • No advice, FTM here but ((hugs)) I'm so sorry you had to endure that!  >:D<

                                                                               
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  • I had a spinal with my c/s. I asked the doctor the difference & they said the main difference is they don't have to be so specific where it's placed. With the epi they're trying not to go too far, but the spinal they just go all the way. Might be why a spinal seems to be more effective. Probably faster to put in as well.
  • I had a spinal with my c/s. I asked the doctor the difference & they said the main difference is they don't have to be so specific where it's placed. With the epi they're trying not to go too far, but the spinal they just go all the way. Might be why a spinal seems to be more effective. Probably faster to put in as well.
    I remember the first epi took forever to put in - mostly because I was already in active labor and baby was wedged up in my ribs and I could never get in the right position for them to get it in (rounded back) and contractions were pretty strong. I sure hope the spinal works better!
  • I had an epidural with my first csection. It started to wear off on the very last stitch. Other than that I felt no pain, just some pressure. This time I will be having a spinal for my RCS.

     Lilypie - (jCE1)

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  • innanniinnanni
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    edited January 29
    I'm honestly not certain which I had because they both go in through the back, right? And I didn't think to ask, but I'm horrified for you and your experience. So sorry. My anesthesiologist was like my new best friend during the surgery. She explained everything and kept me calm. She did comment that I was very aware of my body because I was able to tell her where they were and more or less what was going on, but really it was just pressure and a sense of touch. There was no pain. I could tell that they were stitching me at the end , but it didn't hurt at all. I actually thought that part was fascinating and it helped being able to feel that the baby was coming out. I knew just when to listen for his cry. You should talk to the hospital ahead of time and make sure that another anesthesiologist is scheduled. It sounds like your last one majorly screwed up. Edit: Asked husband, he was a bit more with it and said I had the spinal block.
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  • I just had a c/s last week and I was given the spinal. It was an emergency c/s and I hadn't been given the epidural yet so that's why I got the spinal. It took effect pretty quickly. At first It felt numb and tingly. I really remember the tingling sensation every time they touched me. I didn't feel anything other than the pressure from them pulling out baby. It was definitely a lot of pressure and it did freak me out a bit. But it didn't hurt, just a strange sensation.

    Good luck to you and I hope you have a much better experience this time!
  • I'm so sorry this happened to you. However it is so nice to know someone else is worrying about this along with me! I was induced with my last pregnancy. After a long hard labor I had to have a c-section because LO's heart rate was extremely low (40s) and they had to get him out. I had an epi and they took me right in for a c-section. I remember my OB asking if I felt anything and I did not. However into the surgery I swear I felt her cutting me, the burning was so intense and I was flipping out. I am scared out of my mind for my RCS. However my OB has assured me several times that this upcoming c-section with a spinal will be completely different. I will be delivering feb 6th and I'll post in my birth story how it all goes. T&P that your mind can be at ease and your delivery will be painless!
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  • churst23 said:
    I'm so sorry this happened to you. However it is so nice to know someone else is worrying about this along with me! I was induced with my last pregnancy. After a long hard labor I had to have a c-section because LO's heart rate was extremely low (40s) and they had to get him out. I had an epi and they took me right in for a c-section. I remember my OB asking if I felt anything and I did not. However into the surgery I swear I felt her cutting me, the burning was so intense and I was flipping out. I am scared out of my mind for my RCS. However my OB has assured me several times that this upcoming c-section with a spinal will be completely different. I will be delivering feb 6th and I'll post in my birth story how it all goes. T&P that your mind can be at ease and your delivery will be painless!
    We are delivering on Feb. 6 as well! Good luck to you too! Thanks for the T&Ps too.
  • I just had my csection yesterday and I can't remember which I had. I am pretty sure it was an epi though. My legs felt warm and dead almost immediately and throughout the procedure I could feel pressure and almost like a vibrating but that's it. Feeling them move stuff around was so strange! My anesthesiologist was amazing and talked me through everything - he was so thorough and explained to me and MH exactly what was happening, when he could peek over the drape, and when it was photo time. After delivery, I felt a lot of pressure in my chest while they were closing me up and I panicked - it was very uncomfortable and they gave me some morphine through the IV to ease that discomfort.
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  • I am sorry I am not sure what I had, but I feel so sorry for what you went through.  I am pretty sure whatever I had contained lidocaine, as I had a reaction to it.  However, they put a warm towel on my legs after I was "numb" and when I told them it was warm, they upped whatever I had and I felt nothing the rest of the time.  So, the only point of telling you that is to assure you that your first experience is not the norm, with good staff it can be a positive experience and I hope with all my heart you get good staff this time.

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