Tuesday, February 21, 2012


I love normal labors and deliveries.
I like it when moms are brave enough to say no to elective inductions and wait for natural labor.
To me, it is the way birth should be - when the baby is ready.  It is a joy to be with a mom as she works through her labor, getting up and about, monitoring as needed, showering for comfort or pain medication if that is what the patient wants.
The bag of water breaks on its own.
Labor progresses smoothly - up to the point that the patient is completely dilated and starts pushing as her body is telling her to do.
The fetal head moves down.
Pushing is short lived (I hate those 2-3 hour pushing marathons)...and with each push the head is closer and closer to being delivered.
I call for the doctor and he comes in as the baby is crowning.
The head comes out with the next push...I think to myself, "What a nice delivery".
Then the doctor says, "Put her legs back!"
Oh great...my nice normal delivery is not happening!  The babies shoulders are STUCK!
So as the nurse, I do my job...I call for help, ask for a STAT pediatrician page, put the head of the bed down and flex the mom's legs way back.
That doesn't work.
The doctor tries rotating the baby, I give suprapubic pressure, the family freaks out, we call out for a second OB.
When finally the stuck shoulder releases and the baby comes out....that 60-90 seconds sure seems like a life time.
The baby needs some resusciation but in the end is just fine, with no signs of trauma and goes skin to skin with his mother.
I have decided that shoulder dystocia deliveries are my least favorite deliveries!!!  I want to cry right along with the family. Thank God, I don't have to do these very often.

Simulation delivery (how we practice for emergencies) and it isn't as crazy as watching the real thing:
Be sure to silence my music playlist below.

I better get a "normal" delivery the next time I work!

1 comment:

Lynda Halliger-Otvos said...

You shared the story well and had me on edge there for a few moments-that seldom happens; thanks.