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Labor and PP/newborn procedures


Forum: Natural Childbirth

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  #1  
May 5th, 2013, 09:17 PM
NinjaCakes's Avatar Awesomesauce
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Illinois
Posts: 2,331
I've been reading through some different things related to labor and post-partum/newborn procedures. I obviously have no medical training but I know that some of you do. There are a few things I was wondering about. If anyone could inform me or point me in the direction of accurate information I'd really appreciate it. Any opinions of course are welcome, I know there are a handful of unnecessary procedures out there.

What kinds of fetal monitoring are non-invasive and still allow you to have mobility during labor?
What are heparin and saline IV locks? Why are they used?
What does, "deliver the placenta spontaneously and without assistance" mean? Non-augmented with pitocin/oxytocin?

Why might they give a newborn sugar water?
What is the purpose of the eye ointment? Is it the same as eye antibiotics?
What is the vitamin k shot? Why is it given?
What is the purpose of the heel stick?
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  #2  
May 5th, 2013, 10:11 PM
daneeleigh's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: San Diego, CA
Posts: 6,647
What kinds of fetal monitoring are non-invasive and still allow you to have mobility during labor? I had intermittent monitoring with a doppler. In the beginning they checked me every hour or two. Once I hit transition they checked me a lot more. Maybe every 20 minutes or less?

What are heparin and saline IV locks? Why are they used? This is where they place the IV in but don't hook any medicine to it. It's there incase you need something later. I didn't have an IV.

What does, "deliver the placenta spontaneously and without assistance" mean? Non-augmented with pitocin/oxytocin? I believe you're right. I delivered mine without any assistance other than my midwives helping me.

Why might they give a newborn sugar water? No clue. Low blood sugar?

What is the purpose of the eye ointment? Is it the same as eye antibiotics? I believe it's for incase the mom has an STD, either chylamdia or gonorhea? I did not have this done because I knew I didn't have it.

What is the vitamin k shot? Why is it given? This is for blood clotting I believe. My midwives didn't want me to get it because they said I didn't need it but I wanted to because we circumsize.

What is the purpose of the heel stick? If it's the one I'm thinking of, it's to test for a variety of diseases. A nurse came to our house 2 days PP and did it, not when he was born. We were told by our pedi that it's a mandatory test but who knows. If it happens right at birth maybe they're testing blood sugar levels?

I'm not a doctor so this is just what I can remember from my experience.
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  #3  
May 6th, 2013, 05:03 AM
ashj_1218's Avatar Hiya!
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 11,242
Another lay mans experience, but this is what I know about said questions:

What kinds of fetal monitoring are non-invasive and still allow you to have mobility during labor? A fetoscope (like a stethoscope) is the least invasive and gives mobility. Doppler is the second least (it produces sound waves, hence being second). Most normal labors can use one of those two things every hour-two to monitor baby for a few minutes. Intermittent fetal monitoring is common in hospitals, meaning you can move around except the five minutes you are hooked up to their machine. But you can often still sit upright or be on a birthing ball. All three allow the most mobility.

What are heparin and saline IV locks? Why are they used? Like Dani said, it's a precaution in many hospitals. They are the same thing, just a port in your arm for administering meds if needed. Apparently, it's not a bad plan to have one in labor if you are anticipating any problems (bleeding issues, BP issues), but unnecessary if there are no risk factors. Some hospitals require them for all delivering mothers, some don't. I did not have one for my first and did for my second (and got saline in it with him).

What does, "deliver the placenta spontaneously and without assistance" mean? Non-augmented with pitocin/oxytocin? Yep...just means letting your body do its thing. Most places do it spontaneously, unless there appear to be issues.

Why might they give a newborn sugar water? Low blood sugar/difficulty maintaining temperature. My second had a bit from a cup. They generally give you the option of using a bit of sugar water or a bit of formula.

What is the purpose of the eye ointment? Is it the same as eye antibiotics? STD prevention treatment. And yes, they are the same. It's not necessary unless you know there might be an issue. Some hospitals are more strict on giving it than others. Neither of my boys have had it.

What is the vitamin k shot? Why is it given? Its to give baby a boost of clotting factors. To prevent bleeding. I hope someone can give a good place to read about it. I never really outright made a decision on it. Just happened that my first got one and my second didnt. But I need to read more about it.

What is the purpose of the heel stick? It tests for a wide host of metabolic disorders that can be controlled with dietary changes/medications. Things like PKU. Usually it's a two part test...one at 24 hours or so and one at a week or two. I know it's required n our state, but might not be everywhere.
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  #4  
May 6th, 2013, 08:51 AM
GranolaMamaOf3's Avatar ~Heather~
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: GA
Posts: 5,906
What kinds of fetal monitoring are non-invasive and still allow you to have mobility during labor?
Intermittent monitoring with a hand held fetal doppler is the most effective, comfortable for mom, and least restricting. Mobile monitors are another option, but studies show that continuous monitoring (which these provide) actually leads to a greater number of unnecessary "emergency" c-sections.
Evidence-Based Fetal Monitoring « Evidence Based Birth
Q & A: Continuous electronic fetal monitoring « Evidence Based Birth
A First-time Mom Shares her Quest for Evidence-Based Fetal Monitoring « Evidence Based Birth

What are heparin and saline IV locks? Why are they used?
"A saline lock (sometimes called a “hep-lock” for historic reasons), is an intravenous (IV) catheter that is threaded into a peripheral vein, flushed with saline, and then capped off for later use. This way you are not hooked up to an IV pole, but the nurses have easy access in case you need something injected into your vein later." Read more here - Evidence for the Saline Lock during Labor « Evidence Based Birth


What does, "deliver the placenta spontaneously and without assistance" mean? Non-augmented with pitocin/oxytocin?
Yes, without augmentation; naturally, in your bodies time, without manual assistance. Midwife Thinking wrote an interesting article about the evidence on this topic here


These blog articles cover many of your questions regarding newborn procedures. What about afterwads?, 1o decisions for parents of newborns part-1 and part-2.

Is Erythromycin Eye Ointment Always Necessary for Newborns? « Evidence Based Birth

Why might they give a newborn sugar water?
It was my understanding that this was an outdated practice used simply to pacify a baby between feedings....? but it sounds like (from what the other women are saying) I could be wrong? Here is some info for you to look into further - http://kellymom.com/health/baby-heal...-hypoglycemia/
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Last edited by GranolaMamaOf3; May 6th, 2013 at 08:57 AM.
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  #5  
May 7th, 2013, 07:57 PM
NinjaCakes's Avatar Awesomesauce
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Illinois
Posts: 2,331
Thank you ladies This is exactly what I was hoping for. Much appreciated!
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Last edited by NinjaCakes; May 7th, 2013 at 09:18 PM.
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