Friday, April 30, 2010

Labor & Delivery Questions for our Doctor

I got most of these questions for my doctor from the same sources I got the hospital questions: Baby Lists and Your Best Birth.

First Round of Doctor Questions

  1. How much fetal monitoring do you do during labor? Do you allow intermittent fetal heart rate monitoring?
  2. Under what circumstances do you recommend a c-section? What is your c-section rate?
  3. How often do you cut episiotomies? How often do you opt for a natural tear? Is there anything you can do to help prevent my having an episiotomy? Do I have to have local anesthetic for an episiotomy or can I have a pressure episiotomy?
  4. How many of your clients deliver babies without medication?
  5. How many of your clients are induced? How long past the due date will you allow me to go before scheduling an induction?
  6. Right after my baby is born what is the normal routine for nursing/cord cutting/etc?
  7. How many centimeters do I have to dilate every two hours in order NOT to be induced? How long do I have after my water breaks before I'll be induced?
  8. How long will you let me push so long as I and the baby are doing fine?
  9. Do you have a time limit for producing the placenta? Do I have to have Pitocin to deliver the placenta?
Overall, I'm very comfortable with our doctor an his responses to our questions. 

Neither he, nor the hospital do alot of natural/unmedicated  births - they do a TON of scheduled inductions and c-sections because apparently Plano women get "tired" of being pregnant.  Normally that would make me nervous, but I do know another mom who had an unmedicated labor/delivery with my doctor at the same hospital and felt fully supported in her decision.

And now I realize I've been asking questions along the lines of natural/unmedicated labor and delivery, so don't worry - there's a blog post coming about that touchy topic as well.

I didn't want to overwhelm my doctor with my "interview" for fear he'd fire me as his patient. So, I'm saving these secondary questions for subsequent visits.

Second Round of Doctor Questions:
  1. When should I go to the hospital?
  2. How often do you augment labor? How many moms are put on Pitocin?
  3. What percentage of moms get epidurals?
  4. If you're unavailable when I'm in labor, what is the back-up plan? Can I meet that doctor(s) before my due date?
  5. At what point in labor will you arrive?
  6. Do you allow a doula/midwife/friends/family to be present while I'm in labor?
  7. Do you encourage movement and positioning during labor?
  8. Will I be required to deliver lying down?

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