epidurals and the included interventions

This is an awesome video. Its purpose is to show women just how many interventions are involved with getting an epidural… it’s not just a pain medication, not just a needle in the back. The whole process really ties you to that bed with everything they must place on/in your body.

This video is a quick demonstration–a great tool for childbirth educators or doulas to share with their clients! But also just a great video for all pregnant women!

7 comments to epidurals and the included interventions

  • That is a really interesting video! All of those interventions make sense (in the context of needing to monitor when putting medications into a body) but it really shows what all goes into just that one thing.

    I think several of those things, though, typically would be on a body even without the epidural, unless one specifically asked for something different. I’m thinking the IV, Blood pressure, Pulse Ox, and at least external monitors are standard interventions.

    [Reply]

    babydickey Reply:

    You could probably think of an epidural as a “standard intervention” these days too though.. I mean, probably 9 out of 10 women get one, right? And “standard” still doesn’t mean “okay” — I do agree with you though. Many of those things are standard in a hospital, but they ARE (or should be) optional. Whereas if you get an epidural, you have no choice, those things are mandatory.

    Also – monitors, BP checks, pulse ox, etc – probably only occur (without an epidural) on occasion (like every 30-60min), not consistently kept on you. The only one that seems to be a norm is the IV, but that’s still an intervention (that you CAN say no to) and it’s there, in most cases, to get you ready for drugs or ready for your epidural, since hospitals assume MOST women will end up with them. It’s a slippery slope…

    [Reply]

    Carrie Reply:

    Yes, I agree it is a slippery slope. I don’t think any of those things should be standard, but if a woman was thinking that by not having an epidural, she would avoid such things… Well, I don’t know that they would avoid them, without explicitly saying “No”. My hospital experience was non-typical, in that I was a homebirth transfer, so they pretty much had me hooked up to everything even though I didn’t have pain meds. So, I only can go on what I have observed/been told from friends and family who had normal/non-painmed births in hospital.

    If I were planning a hospital birth, I would be the annoying patient who said no to everything and asked for monitoring with a fetoscope instead of the electronic monitors. I guess that’s why I choose homebirth, though!

    [Reply]

    babydickey Reply:

    Haha, well that’s me too! I said no to everything, but they asked 50948 times in a row until I finally said yes and it was allllllll downhill from there. Which is why I’m planning a homebirth this time 🙂

    [Reply]

  • Rachel

    THIS is what they should show you in child-birth prep classes! I know that mine definitely didn’t. And they should warn you of some of the complications caused by epidurals, too!

    [Reply]

    babydickey Reply:

    YES, exactly!!! I’m fine with epidurals if women want them — I mean, I had one my first time! — but what happened to INFORMED CONSENT?!?!?! Informed consent means, as a patient, you are told about all possible complications and exactly what happens for a procedure. Are you told ANY of that before an epidural?! NO. Even if you ask. Because I did. <–can you see how bothered I am by this? Haha, I'm all worked up now. 🙂

    [Reply]

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