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There is a global c-section epidemic. Both mothers and babies are suffering trauma and health risks. New research is emerging indicating that the health of society at large is being compromised as a result. While the reasons for the epidemic are varied and complex, awareness is growing (thanks in large…
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Beep. Beep. Beep. You are in labor, lying in bed attached to an electronic fetal heart monitor (EFM).  A medical professional enters the room and immediately walks over to this machine, and with no eye contact he or she unfolds the long strands of paper to read a foreign language…
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I had my first pre-natal intake with my new doctors office after our move down to South Georgia on June 9, 2010. I was in the middle of my 36th week of pregnancy and things had been going pretty well. Or so I thought. The nurse did a blood pressure check,…
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When it comes to birth, there are so many options and so many questions to think about it is enough to make any mother's head spin.  Should I consent to cervical checks? My provider is talking induction, is that a good choice for me? While every mother has the right…
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If you opt to do a hospital birth, you will most likely be faced with the choice to either consent or deny the placement of an intravenous catheter (IV). The IV is sometimes not attached to any tubing or fluid. This is called a saline lock, or hep lock. It…
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Cesarean Sections, also known as a c-section, is the surgical removal of the baby directly from the uterus.  While many women now elect to skip labor altogether (and their practitioners usually oblige,) others are determined to avoid a c-section at all costs. C-Sections are major abdominal surgery despite the short…
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There are two common tools used to “assist” delivery when the head of the baby is near the vaginal opening; the vacuum and forceps.  Many practitioners will perform an episiotomy before using one of these tools unless you explicitly request otherwise.  The vacuum is a suction device that is placed…
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If your provider is an OB, you will likely be tested for Group B Strep (GBS) between 35 and 37 weeks by swabbing the vagina and rectum.  GBS is caused by naturally occurring bacteria in the intestinal tract.  The presence of GBS during routine screening does not mean that the…
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Vaginal Exams (VEs) are a common way for the OB to determine how labor is progressing.  Once the cervix has opened 10cm, it is assumed that the mother may begin pushing.  That being said, many women never actually get to 10cm, and are able to successfully push out their baby…
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Artificial Rupture of the Membranes (AROM) involves the use of a tool that looks much like a crochet needle to puncture the bag of waters.  Breaking the waters stimulates the labor hormones to increase.  This procedure however carries an increased risk of infection to both the mother and baby.  AROM…
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