One womans account of being poorly treated in a country hospital whilst in labour waiting for transfer to a larger city hospital.
When I was pregnant with my first son I found out that I had an ovarian cyst. The cyst burst several times during the first 22 weeks of pregnancy and my doctors told me that there was nothing they could do. Finally after it bursting a final time they decided to send me to a Gynaecologist who told me to come back the following day and have it removed surgically or risk death to either myself, the baby or both of us in childbirth. Needless to say that I came straight back up. The cyst had fused to my ovary and as a result of it I lost an ovary and fallopian tube in that one surgery. So you could say that the survival of my baby was a miracle. When we got the results back it turned out that the cyst was borderline cancer. Once again I thanked my lucky stars that it had finally been removed.
I progressed through the rest of the pregnancy without any problems only to be told when I went in to labour that I was too fat to have a natural birth and that the pain that I was having was nothing and it would get a lot worse before the baby came. I was in hospital 24hrs with minor contractions before they told me that they were going to transfer me to another hospital in a city where my husband did not know his way around and was unable to drive in that sort of traffic (we come from the country). By this time I still hadn't started to dilate.
Three hours later when the midwife that was to accompany my to the city arrived I was in a lot of pain with no break between contractions (during this 3hrs time no medical staff came near me or my family). My mother told her to do something because if family history repeats itself (the hospital had also told us that history has no bearing what so ever on your birthing experience) I would be about to deliver. So she decided to finally do an internal and in doing so broke my waters and I had to start pushing before they even got me to the birthing room. So here I was, being wheeled down the hallway in full labour pushing.
It took three hours to dilate from 0 - 10cm, 3 good pushes once my waters were broken, no drugs or gas or anything else, and my beautiful baby boy was born naturally. Then, the midwife broke the umbilical cord off the placenta which meant I had to then go in to theatre to remove that. The doctors tried for two hours to give me an epidural to remove the placenta but they kept missing and then had to put me fully under to remove it. As a result of the failed attempt to get the epidural in I still experience some slight pain and discomfort in my lower back around the spot where they tried to put it in.
I'd like other mothers to be to fully know there rights when they are in labour, especially in small town hospitals. Thinking back now (almost two years ago) I wonder whether I should have made a formal complaint about the treatment, or lack there of, that I received during my first experience of giving birth.
I would also like others to be aware of ovarian cysts whilst pregnant and the effects that it could cause.
I was one of the lucky ones who survived, came out the other end, with only one ovary and have now managed to fall pregnant again without the help of IVF.
Thanks for listening