3rd Trimester

Epidural and doctor question

Ok, so my OB came highly recommended through family members. This is the reason why i have went with him.

During my last appointment, we discussed labor and delivery. We covered alot of info and he also sent me home with information. I didn't think to ask about pain meds/epidural and all that fun stuff. I figured, they were going to have options for me regardless if i was in pain.

Well...after my appointment, I had talked with my family who have had their babies delivered by my doctor and just asked them about it. They stated that my OB was anall natural doctor and that epidurals and pain meds were not an option. I about died! I certianly would love to go as long as possible without meds but...if its unbearable, i would love to have the option for an epidural.

Have any of you ladies heard of a doctor denying an epidural who has claimed to be an "all natural" doctor? My doctor has never mentioned anything like that to me. I know i need to talk with him about it..but i was just curious.

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Re: Epidural and doctor question

  • I have never heard of that. I mean, it's not the OB who gives the epidural anyway, it's the anesthesiologist. My OB was not even present when I got the epidural.


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  • image verovladamir:
    I have never heard of that. I mean, it's not the OB who gives the epidural anyway, it's the anesthesiologist. My OB was not even present when I got the epidural.

    That was my thought process as well. Thats why i didn't feel a need to ask.

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    WIMG950372 1


  • Pretty sure this can't happen. If you ask for something in the hospital like an epi, pretty sure they have to give it to you unless you have a medical reason not to. 
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  • I have not heard of that either. I would think at this point in your pregnancy there would have been other signs or mentions of being an all natural type of doctor.  As PP said, your OB may not even be there if/when you want an epidural, so it may not even be an issue.  This is something I would definitely ask him/her about though asap, especially if you want the option.
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  • I was at a birth center where they literally don't even have any pain meds on the property. You have to be transferred to a hospital if you wanted them. SEVERAL times I wanted pain meds, but because it wasn't an option, I obviously couldn't have them. I completely understand the need for the pain meds, BUT, just about when you think you can't take it anymore, you're in transition and so close to meeting baby. The baby arrives, you're alert and can actually walk, and you feel like a warrior for doing without pain meds. You CAN do it, you will live through the pain.
    Just giving you some encouragement :)
    If I'd had the option of pain meds, I would have taken it. But I'm SO glad I didn't.
  • Call your doctor and ask about pain med options since you forgot. 

    If you're delivering in a hospital (as opposed to a birthing center like PP described), they should definitely have an anesthesiologist on staff. You tell the nurse you want the epi and they page the pain doctor, the order doesn't go through an OBGYN.  Nurses were with me the entire time I was in the hospital, the doctor only came in every two hours to check my dilation and then to deliver Olivia. 

     I was in a shitton of pain by the time I got the epi and I have no regrets.  I have friends that went natural and no one had a negative experience.  There are pluses and minuses on both sides. 

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  • Wha?  Yeah... I've never heard of that.  Are you delivering in a hospital?  Because as PP mentioned it's not even the OB that administers the epidural, it's an anesthesiologist.  The only situations I've heard where people can't have an epidural are with homebirths and birth centers for obvious reasons.

    Also, I'm with a small midwife practice that delivers in hospital.  They're definitely more natural leaning, but plenty of their patients plan for an epidural right from the start or end up with one for whatever reason.  I've never heard of a provider who delivers in the hospital not supporting the option for an epidural.  

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  • image sbevmc09:

    Wha?  Yeah... I've never heard of that.  Are you delivering in a hospital?  Because as PP mentioned it's not even the OB that administers the epidural, it's an anesthesiologist.  The only situations I've heard where people can't have an epidural are with homebirths and birth centers for obvious reasons.

    Also, I'm with a small midwife practice that delivers in hospital.  They're definitely more natural leaning, but plenty of their patients plan for an epidural right from the start or end up with one for whatever reason.  I've never heard of a provider who delivers in the hospital not supporting the option for an epidural.  

    Yes, i will be delivering at a hospital. I have never heard of that as well. Thats why i was shocked when i was told that.

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    WIMG950372 1


  • My OB, who practices within the hospital, is an avid supporter of all natural (which is why I chose him) but he does not try to deter patients who want it.  I would just bring it up with him on your next visit - it is likely that your information sources could be making assumptions that are not completely true.  
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  • image verovladamir:
    I have never heard of that. I mean, it's not the OB who gives the epidural anyway, it's the anesthesiologist. My OB was not even present when I got the epidural.

     

    This. Also, do you have the option to pre-register at your hospital and let them know all of your preferences regarding your pain meds, labor, etc. beforehand? We got to meet with a nurse ahead of time to fill out all of the paperwork, take care of insurance, social security, birth certificate stuff, and discuss the birth plan. That way everything goes as smooth as possible when it comes time to have the baby, and the hospital will know to offer you the epi before it is too late.

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  • I talked to my MFM OB about labor and delivery in the last couple of appointments.  He said that it all depends what I feel comfortable on using.  I'm a FTM and I only heard of my family doctor to ask for epi if I"m afraid of pain as much as her.  Also, my MFM OB would not be at the hospital at my scheduled date, I asked if he could note down in my chart that I want meds like epi and narcotics just in case, he told me that he's not the one I should talk to.  that I should talk to the anesthesiologist on that day.
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  • My first reaction was that your family is messing with you! But seriously, as others have said - it's not really up to the OB, it's up to YOU. If you are delivering at a hospital (not say, a birthing center or at home), then the hospital will have policies about administering pain meds and they won't deny you those things unless there are medical reasons not to. And your OB is likely to not be very involved at that point. It's administered by the anesthesiologist, and you'll see mostly l&d nurses until it's time to push (or there are other complications) anyway.
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  • I don't think any hospital will restrict pain medication for a patient, regardless of doctor's stance.  I am with midwives and like PP said, even though they lean towards natural birthing, they do ask your birth plan.  Mine was simple, I want pain medication and I want a tubal.  She was like ok, do you want pain meds upfront or are you willing to try without for a bit.  Nope, been there, done that (not by choice, DS2 came too fast for anything to be administered) and would never deny myself pain relief regardless of the medical situation.
  • Hmmmm. This is something you need to address with your OB doc. The anesthesiologist or nurse anesthetist is the one who actually does the epidural but it must first be ordered by the OB. 

    Some OB's prefer to wait until you have reached a certain dilation point, like 4cm. However, I have never heard of an OB completely denying a patient an epidural.  

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  • image verovladamir:
    I have never heard of that. I mean, it's not the OB who gives the epidural anyway, it's the anesthesiologist. My OB was not even present when I got the epidural.

    This is my thought. The nurses asked me about and arranged for the epidural with the anesthesiologist. My doctor was nowhere in sight.

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  • They cannot deny you pain meds all together but they can hold you off. Pain is what the patient says it is. The only reason they would ask you to wait is if they are not 100% sure that you are in active labor or if you had taken an IV pain med that would react/compound the epi effect. Alot of the meds that go in to an epi can begiven IV so they can overlap. If a dr ever said no about pain meds during labor I would find another doc.

  • image verovladamir:
    I have never heard of that. I mean, it's not the OB who gives the epidural anyway, it's the anesthesiologist. My OB was not even present when I got the epidural.

    This. Don't even worry about it. I would never allow an OB to dictate whether or not I could get meds anyway. No one will stop me from getting an epidural next time I have a child. 

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