The illogical policy that I’d like to share today isn’t necessarily widespread, but I’ve now heard this one three times, from three different areas of the world, so in my book that means it warrants discussion.
Midwives and birth folk are reporting that there are areas in which a rather curious policy is being imposed upon women who have previously had a caesarean section and are seeking a vaginal birth with a subsequent baby (VBAC). While these women are ‘allowed‘ and in some cases positively encouraged to have an epidural, they are being told that they are not ‘allowed‘ to use a water pool or bath for pain relief in labour ‘in case the pain relieving effect of the water masks the pain of a uterine rupture’.
Notwithstanding the fact that uterine rupture isn’t always heralded by pain (and is not common and is not nearly as significant a risk as some people are being led to believe, and if you would like to read more on this then check out this fab blog post by Rachel Reed), such a policy makes no sense.
Unless you believe that water is a more effective form of pain relief than epidural analgesia?! 😉
In which case, maybe we should be spending less on anaesthetists and more on birth pools? 😉