Membranes stripped/swept — The Bump
March 2016 Moms

Membranes stripped/swept

Has anyone had their membranes stripped? What was your experience like? Is it painful and did it send you into labor? My doctor wants to do mine next week and I'm freaking out that it will hurt 
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Re: Membranes stripped/swept

  • I had mine done at 38 weeks since I was already at 4cm. It was definitely uncomfortable but I wouldn't say painful. Now I'm 38 weeks 5 days and still pregnant, so didn't do anything for me but make me crampy and bleed a little. I'll try again at my appointment on Thursday, but not getting my hopes up. 
  • Why does he want to do it? Are you overdue?? Is there some medical reason for it?


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  • Yea I've heard it works for some women and doesn't work so it's kinda a toss up! Hopefully the next time your doc does it, it'll work!! (:
  • No not over due, no reason in particular I'm 39 weeks tomorrow. 
  • Could someone explain the difference between the doctor stripping/sweeping your membranes and the doctor breaking your water?
  • When the doc strips/sweeps the membranes, he is just separating the sac from the cervix which is supposed to release a hormone that can start labor within 1-2 days. It only works 50% of the time, at least from what I've read. Sometimes they have to do it multiple times before you even go into labor and most of the time docs won't do it until you're at least 39 weeks or have medical reasons to have it done earlier. And then when they break your water it's for sure that you will go into labor they do it with a hook that looks like a crochet needle.
  • I've had it done with both of my first two, at 39w 4d and 39w 5d. I was already 3 cm with both of them. My first one was born 12 hours later and my second was born 9 hours later, both after about 5.5 hours of labor.

     I agree, it was uncomfortable for a minute but not particularly painful. 

    From what I have read and from personal experience, it seems to have a good shot at working if your body is ready. If your body isn't ready, it doesn't seem to do much. I will probably have it done next week at 39 weeks if my body is ready. 

    That being said, if you're uncomfortable with it or don't want it done, I would just decline it and keep waiting, unless there's a medical reason not to. 
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  • Thanks for the feedback! I think I'll definitely do it I was just worried about it hurting lol I'm only 1 cm and 60% effaced though so hopefully it even works
  • If you're only 1cm and 60% effaced I'm thinking its going to hurt.  I don't even understand why your Dr would want to do it unless you have more progress by next week.  I did have mine swept once (was 3cm) and it did put me into early labor.  I thought it hurt but I also think internals hurt in general so I guess I'm a big baby.  
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  • schweitzschweitz
    100 Love Its 10 Comments First Anniversary Name Dropper
    member
    edited February 2016
    I actually never knew what it meant to have them swept... Doesn't sound pleasant. 


  • My doc is also doing it next week. I have been at 3cm for 3 weeks now and 70% effaced, so we will see if it progresses things along.

  • I had mine done at 39w6d. I was dialated almost 2 and was having rising BP so we were all hoping things would get going. For me it was quite painful but quick. I went into labor the next day on my due date at about 6pm. 

  • I've been 1 cm for 3 weeks now and I also have chronic high b.p so he's going to do it to get things going. I hope it works for me like it did for you ladies!
  • I had it done this morning, due to high bp. I am 2cm and 50% effaced. It was very sore for me but only took about 20 secs.  I was having quite regular contractions for a few hours but now they have fizzled out. 
  • I had this done and it did nothing and it was painful for me.  The next thing they did was insert balloons to encourage labor (I was past my due date), this was more painful and did nothing.  I ended up in labor for 24 hours then having an emergency C-section.  
  • Update! It seemed to work for me. My waters broke at 7pm same night
    cmerribury
  • Omg that's awesome!! That gives me hope! I'm probably going to have mine done tomorrow! Good luck in labor and congrats  (:
  • @Poppy0419 any luck yet with the membranes strip?
  • @brookeglenn50 I had a second sweep done on Thursday and had my baby yesterday afternoon. I definitely think it got something started and contributed to a fast and furious start to labor. I had labor signs from the afternoon I had it done until contractions started in. 
  • I had a sweep at 38 & 39 weeks. So far nada. My 39 week appt was Friday last week. STM. 
  • Oh no ): were you already dilated? If so how far? @ARogers26 ;
  • In my first pregnancy, I had it done three times.  I was only 2cm and the first time it hurt.  I bled a lot after then nothing.  Second one, still only dilated 2cm and bled more.  No baby.  She wasn't ready even at 41 weeks.  I was induced, so it didn't work for me.
  • Oh no ): were you already dilated? If so how far? @ARogers26 ;
    Yep. 2.5 at 38 weeks and 4 last Friday at 39. I was 80% Friday and he was at 0 station. 
  • Update: I am now 39w 6d and had my membranes stripped this morning, so far just really crampy, my doc said it works 3/4 times so I'm really hopeful! I didn't think it was painful at all, just felt like a normal exam with him moving his finger more. I would definitely encourage anyone to try it, as long as you and your doc think it's okay.
    ARogers26katy0990
  • I hope it works for you. If I make it to my appointment Friday I am totally having it done again. Thinking about using my pump tonight for nipple stimulation. 
  • The good news for me is that I think the stripping is what has helped me dilate so much. So I am almost half way there when this does start. 
  • EmilyXLCEmilyXLC
    Fourth Anniversary 100 Comments 5 Love Its Photogenic
    member
    edited March 2016
    With my first pregnancy, I had a sweep at 41 weeks & in less than 3 hours I began having period-like cramping... later that night I began a very long labor.

    I also feel the need to add that while it doesn't HURT per se, it is uncomfortable... but you're about to be having a baby, so you'd may as well accept that pretty much everything from here on out is not going to be comfortable.

    mshukhamyidkitteh81
  • Had this done today at 39+1. I also didn't think it was painful, just not comfortable. Hoping for some real labor. Tired of false labor and tired of having this baby's head between my legs. Time to come out little one! Stm, 2cms... Feeling done.
    ARogers26Zoyiaperry
  • Had mine done yesterday morning. I'm 3cm and 50% baby at -2. Times contractions last night for two hours but then they fizzled. 

    Lost my mucus plug this morning (EW!) which hasn't happened before (this is my third) and have had occasional contractions but that's it. 

    My first two were born the same day I had it done, so I guess it's not working as well this time. Oh well, just keep waiting I guess!
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    ARogers26
  • Update: had mine stripped yesterday 3/1 morning, went into labor at 3am this morning. It's been a looooong labor, I'm admitted but not progressing fast they think she will be born early morning 3/3. Either way so excited! 
    Poppy0419Zoyiaperry
  • I've had it done twice and I'm still not in labor or showing any signs of labor coming
  • Congrats @brookeglenn50 !! Thinking of you today and hope you have an easy labor! 
  • 40 weeks yesterday, Dr done the membrane sweeping. It wasn't painful at all, felt like the regular exams he's been giving me! I did feel lots of cramping afterwards and I've been spotting&bleeding a little since the visit. Hoping the sweep helps kick start labor, I really want to have a natural, un-medicated birth. So I'm trying to avoid being medically induced as much as possible!! *crossing my fingers*!
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  • Just an FYI, membrane sweeps do increase the likelihood of your water breaking spontaneously prior to labor starting. Which also increases the chances of labor itself being more intense and painful. I'm opting out of it this time if I can. 
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    kitteh81
  • ARogers26ARogers26
    500 Love Its 100 Comments Second Anniversary First Answer
    member
    edited March 2016
    3rd sweep today at 39+6. Hoping for action. I am 4.5 cm 90% eff. 

    Eta. Spelling. 
    Naominicolep
  • @mshukh that did happen in my instance. Waters broke after sweep and i went to 8cm dialated in about 3 hours
    ARogers26
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