Monday, July 21, 2008

We're Only Human, Right?

So we all make mistakes don't we?

The primip I was waiting on had a section Saturday morning. We had labored at home for almost 24 hours, with lots of little things that were "off". Finally we transported. It was a good transport, they were nice to her. They let her labor for another 6 hours before going into surgery. Baby is okay, mom is okay.

My mistake was in checking dilation. I'm not sure what I was actually feeling, but it FELT LIKE an 8 cm cervix. I could even get my finger between it and the baby's head. I could feel suture lines and fontanels. The next time I checked her on the birth stool, she was really only 6 cm. I was embarrassed and disgusted with myself for being wrong on her dilation. I've felt that "false lip" once before. I'm still not sure what it really was, but it sure felt like cervix to me.

I guess the reason I've had so many risk out/faerylady missing is because I still need more experience.

Feeling demoralized today.


tie-dyed doula said...

I hope that you don't beat yourself up to badly, girl, I have read that some women can go backwards for bit-fear or strangers in the room or being uncomfortable to the extreme-maybe that was happening?
You are awesome and an inspiration!
Shine On!!

Jody said...

Hey Don't demorilize yourself!! Imma telling you its Hard figuring out what all that is inside lol. I'm new at this..very new, and I ask alot of questions still. But basically everyone tells me its just something you have to keep feeling. Oneday you finally understand it all. And anterior lips? Well I had a mom I thought was fully dilated. Doc came in and felt around and said "Oh theres still a lip, so let her labor some more." Yeah I felt sort dumb. But its just not easy to tell what everything is by PLZ don't feel bad. Good work!

Radical Midwife said...

It could have changed, though. I've seen dilation be one thing between contractions, and different during contractions; also I've seen a cervix that did close up some, usually due to some malposition issue.
Don't be hard on yourself! It even happens in the hospitals, where they have TONS of experience checking dilation.

Morag said...

Craptastic. I'm sorry hon. I recently made a similar mistake. It happens, even to seasoned midwives.

minstrelmeg said...

Hi! I came across your blog in a search for info about posterior cervix during labor. I was shocked to read your story because it resembled my own. My sister and I both had 40+ hour labors with posterior cervixes!! No one ever knows what I am talking about when I explain it. I am glad to find someone who went through the same thing. Have you ever had a client with this?

Jennifer (Niffer) said...

Hospital RN here... yeah, we do it too! LOL! I do have to say that it's probably the most discouraging thing for me! UGH! To have the doc or another nurse tell the patient a different exam is sooo frustrating! I've learned to undercut my exam by 1 cm if they're between 5-8 cm. Saves me embarrassment and them sadness of not really being dilated as far. I've measured with tape with our docs, and they are so off my 7cm really is 7m, but they call it 5 so I do too.
Tomorrow is another day, and another chance to do better.

Sandy said...

Hey, cheer up. At my last birth, #3 for me, the midwife thought the baby was really up high, tried to push back an "anterior lip" while I was contracting (terrible thing to do, never do this!) and then said I was about 8 - 9 and then left me to labor on my own some more. I then responded, as she was about to leave the room, that I could feel the baby, who happened to be crowning! This was a very experienced midwife. Birth is unpredictable.

DoulaMomma said...

My comments are coming in late, so I'm sure you're well beyond this. Like others have said, it can be confusing - I find a super soft/but still kind of long cervix sometimes hard to check (I'm pretty new at checking)
Anyway, I too have seen very experienced nurses/midwives/docs be very different from each other...had someone recently checked by two people in a row because they were having a hard time telling if she was fully or pretty closed!
And I once caught a baby (unintended, as a doula, in a hospital, with doctor in the room) about 20-30 min after the mom was told she was 3cm (I had thought she was in transition - maybe she closed up as we got to the hospital)!
Anyway, your stories are an inspiration.