Be careful when choosing a midwife....

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kridda_88's picture
Joined: 01/28/08
Posts: 1798
Be careful when choosing a midwife....

Make sure you choose a good midwife that doesn't have a history of bad choices behind her.

Thanks to Laura aka winky_the_houseelf for giving me a heads up about this midwife.

I just had a friend who delivered with her and she almost killed my friends baby. My friends [FONT=verdana]water[/FONT]
broke (that was the start of labor) and it contained Maconium, and then she stalled with labor, after 42 hours she finally had the baby and she pushed for several hours, Baby was nearly 9 Ibs with a huge head, and baby was born not breathing and no [FONT=verdana]heart[/FONT] beat. They had to perform CPR for a minute or so before the baby started breathing. So so scary. At the end the midwife admitted that she should have transferred 12 hours before the birth.

Winky_the_HouseElf's picture
Joined: 02/10/02
Posts: 292

Absolutely ask around! Not all midwives are safe, just as not all doctors are safe. In a home birth setting you definitely want to make sure you're in good hands because hers may be the only pair around. Transport is sometimes necessary and, unfortunately, there are some midwives who avoid it even when it is the safest thing to do. Yes, birth is generally safe, but when something abnormal/potentially unsafe occurs, transport may be the best solution. Extremes at both end of the spectrum (providers who approach every birth as an emergency even when everything is normal and providers who approach every birth as normal even if there is an emergency) are DANGEROUS. It's the moms and babies who suffer when decisions are guided by arrogance or narrow-mindedness rather than the circumstances of a specific mother/baby pair. Sad

MrsMangoBabe's picture
Joined: 04/09/07
Posts: 2276

that is so scary about the baby who had to have CPR! The meconium and the long labor were both signs that there could be a problem, and my guess is the fetal heart tones were probably telling, also. That makes me sad that there are midwives like that--we have hospital transfers for a reason. Midwives who know the signs of problems and actually pay attention to them almost never have to perform CPR on babies. I remember midwife blogger Navelgazing Midwife saying she has never had to do it, and her website says she's attended approximatley 900 births

JennsDesertCrew's picture
Joined: 09/09/10
Posts: 200

Some midwives are more cautious than others. Not to put the blame on anyone but the client also needs to educate herself throughout the pregnancy. I myself would have probably asked to be transferred. I'm wondering if the mec was light staining or thick. And like someone said what were the heart tones. The weight is pretty normal for homebirth babies. Mom and baby are doing well now?

JennsDesertCrew's picture
Joined: 09/09/10
Posts: 200

"MrsMangoBabe" wrote:

I remember midwife blogger Navelgazing Midwife saying she has never had to do it, and her website says she's attended approximatley 900 births

She was one of my midwives with my two younger girls!

Joined: 11/23/07
Posts: 870

exact circumstances are hard to duplicate and judge the person on, but i bet an OB would never admit that a prophylactic c-section was a mistake.......

MrsMangoBabe's picture
Joined: 04/09/07
Posts: 2276

I agree that a woman should be informed and in tune with her own intuition about these kinds of things, the reason we hire a midwife is to recognize when something is not right and give her opinion, as someone with knowledge and experience, about when homebirth is no longer advisable. Otherwise why not just have a UC, KWIM?

I'm reading this book about midwifery that is bascially a bunch of interviews with different midwives and they all talk about how important it is for a midwife to clue in and intuit when something isn't right. I just find it frustraiting that the midwife apparently knew she should have recommended transfer, but didn't. It is a good point that she admitted her mistake, though. OBs don't do that becasuse it's basically asking for a lawsuit.

Joined: 05/31/06
Posts: 4780

I think that claiming that this midwife almost killed a baby seems a little extreme. I googled her, and she seems to have a great track record. Unfortunately, this thread now comes up on the first page of a google search about her.

I had a very similar homebirth labor to the one you describe, SROM (though no meconium), totally stalled labor, castor oil induction, and a very large baby for my small body, and when transfer became necessary we did it. I still wonder if more trying, more time, more positioning changes might have enabled us to get my son out at home. All told I had 48 hours of labor. It is easy to second guess many of our choices, the castor oil, the trying to push through a stubborn anterior lip, using a rebozo etc etc etc.....but at the time we make our choices with the information that we have available to us. Sometimes in hindsight we can admit that perhaps that we did not make the best decision, but that is much different from saying that someone almost killed a baby. To me, at least.

Anyway, not sure what my point is, other than to say I think that we need to be careful not slandering someone based on just one story. Absolutely there are better and worse midwives out there (just like people of any profession) ~ talking to others, searching online, and doing thorough interviews are really important!

Winky_the_HouseElf's picture
Joined: 02/10/02
Posts: 292

"Potter75" wrote:

I think that claiming that this midwife almost killed a baby seems a little extreme. I googled her, and she seems to have a great track record. Unfortunately, this thread now comes up on the first page of a google search about her.... Anyway, not sure what my point is, other than to say I think that we need to be careful not slandering someone based on just one story. Absolutely there are better and worse midwives out there (just like people of any profession) ~ talking to others, searching online, and doing thorough interviews are really important!

The problem is that this particular midwife (who is in my local community) has a history of this type of mistake (not transferring when it was clearly indicated). I know another mom who literally ALMOST DIED because this same midwife did not transfer her client. It was the doula (a good friend of mine) who suggested hospital transport because of the majorly high BP, protein spilling, and fetal tachycardia that did not resolve. When the mom arrived at the hospital she was in ORGAN FAILURE due to HELLP. She had an emergency c-section and she and the baby both survived, but things could have been handled much more safely.

My nephew was born dead after a different home birth midwife suggested staying home for the birth even though he was 6 weeks early and there were several other SERIOUS indications for transfer. At 9 cm, my SIL decided to transfer. My nephew was born in the hospital and revived after five minutes. Thankfully, he is a healthy little one-year-old today, but had my SIL actually stayed home for the birth like her midwife suggested, I don't think he would be here.

There is a huge problem within the natural birth community when it comes to actual cases of midwife malpractice. Most people want to deny that these things ever happen, try to place the blame on the mother, or say that it was a fluke and transferring wouldn't have helped anything anyway.

The truth is that sometimes things DO go wrong during the birth process. If that happens and the mother is not with a caregiver who recognizes and acts on the problem, mothers and babies get hurt or sometimes die.

I LOVE home birth. My last four babies were born at home and I would choose home birth again. It is so, so, so very important to make sure you choose a midwife who knows the limitations of home birth and will transfer care if that ever becomes the safer option.

Chimmy's picture
Joined: 08/03/01
Posts: 2775

"Winky_the_HouseElf" wrote:

The problem is that this particular midwife (who is in my local community) has a history of this type of mistake (not transferring when it was clearly indicated). I know another mom who literally ALMOST DIED because this same midwife did not transfer her client. It was the doula (a good friend of mine) who suggested hospital transport because of the majorly high BP, protein spilling, and fetal tachycardia that did not resolve. When the mom arrived at the hospital she was in ORGAN FAILURE due to HELLP. She had an emergency c-section and she and the baby both survived, but things could have been handled much more safely.

My nephew was born dead after a different home birth midwife suggested staying home for the birth even though he was 6 weeks early and there were several other SERIOUS indications for transfer. At 9 cm, my SIL decided to transfer. My nephew was born in the hospital and revived after five minutes. Thankfully, he is a healthy little one-year-old today, but had my SIL actually stayed home for the birth like her midwife suggested, I don't think he would be here.

There is a huge problem within the natural birth community when it comes to actual cases of midwife malpractice. Most people want to deny that these things ever happen, try to place the blame on the mother, or say that it was a fluke and transferring wouldn't have helped anything anyway.

The truth is that sometimes things DO go wrong during the birth process. If that happens and the mother is not with a caregiver who recognizes and acts on the problem, mothers and babies get hurt or sometimes die.

I LOVE home birth. My last four babies were born at home and I would choose home birth again. It is so, so, so very important to make sure you choose a midwife who knows the limitations of home birth and will transfer care if that ever becomes the safer option.

I couldn't of said it better.

Joined: 05/31/06
Posts: 4780

The truth is that sometimes things DO go wrong during the birth process. If that happens and the mother is not with a caregiver who recognizes and acts on the problem, mothers and babies get hurt or sometimes die.

I could not possibly agree more. I guess I was just surprised to see a midwife specifically named on here as an almost-baby-killer. I have read hundreds of stories of OB's endangering mothers and babies on here, but have never seen one named. That's all.

MrsMangoBabe's picture
Joined: 04/09/07
Posts: 2276

"Potter75" wrote:

I could not possibly agree more. I guess I was just surprised to see a midwife specifically named on here as an almost-baby-killer. I have read hundreds of stories of OB's endangering mothers and babies on here, but have never seen one named. That's all.

I felt that your concerns were valid, which is why I took the issue to admin, and they felt it would be best to edit the post to remove the last name of the midwife, which has been done.

If anyone here ever notices something posted that seems inappropriate, rather than stating the problem publically, which can sometimes cause drama, please please pm one of the hosts (me, Christy, or Mindie) with your concerns and we'll take care of it.

kridda_88's picture
Joined: 01/28/08
Posts: 1798

Just to state, I honestly did not mean to post her name at all. I know OB's make far more mistakes than midwifes but I just wanted to let people know that you need to be just as careful choosing a midwife as you would an OB. It can be just as dangerous if you do not researching a midwife. In this case my friend went with the cheapest midwife out there with out doing full research on her and could have avoided this if she went with a midwife with a better track record. "Could have" being the key word.

I'm sorry I caused problems and once again I really didn't mean to post her name.

Joined: 11/23/07
Posts: 870

damn but that was a well-behaved argument....... usually if anything even resembles a debate on other boards it becomes much of an all-out long before anyone double checks their resources or admits even a slight mistake.

-just to add to my first post, i'm not going to excuse her decisions, like i said, exact conditions are impossible to duplicate or judge people on, but in any case it is sad when that happens and it seems that something obvious, even if less desirable, could have changed the outcome much to the better for then entire situation. i may have seemed blase about it because she's not local to me... and location is everything sometimes, as i have learned in my own quest down the path of NCB.

MrsMangoBabe's picture
Joined: 04/09/07
Posts: 2276

It's ok, Krista. It can be easy to forget that this is a searchable public board and you're not just talking to a group of people.

Jenni--I've noticed this board usually does a really good job keeping things civil. In my own history of posting here, the only time something got out of hand was right when I first joined this board, nearly three years ago, over someone not liking a c-section blinkie that said something like "c-section mama: cut with love"--a whole bunch of c-section moms who were not regular posters here jumped in, but if that is the only big drama I remember in 3 years, so that's pretty good

Chimmy's picture
Joined: 08/03/01
Posts: 2775

There have been a few growing pains with the board, but over all it has been a fantastic place of support. I think this discussion went very well too & I've enjoyed reading the replies.

kridda_88's picture
Joined: 01/28/08
Posts: 1798

Yeah I knew that the posts were public. Were i goofed up is I was talking to my friends MIL and just confused myself while trying to post two places at once. Not a good idea.

Thank you for not tearing me to pieces because on all my other boards that's what tends to happen to me for speaking my mind. I will try to make sure to proof read before posting now as to avoid those things again.

kvo
kvo's picture
Joined: 12/18/06
Posts: 902

That's really scary about the baby and the other mom w/organ failure. Someone I work with was telling me recently about a friend of his who had a HB and the baby did not survive...apparently they couldn't get him breathing. I know MWs carry oxygen tanks b/c sometimes babies or moms need it. My baby needed it. I don't know the details, so can't really make any judgements, but it made me wonder if perhaps there were warning signs earlier that would have indicated a transfer.

Is the MW in question licensed through her state/province? Wouldn't there be an investigation if she had a track record of unsafe practices?

kridda_88's picture
Joined: 01/28/08
Posts: 1798

BTW momma and baby are doing fine. Momma loves how fast she is recovering, she was a VBAC momma, and baby is just really bruised with "a very funny shaped head." With the fact that she got her VBAC I don't think she blames the midwife at all. Which I can understand too.

She is licensed but I don't know how many people have reported the problems.

Mom2ThreeKiddos's picture
Joined: 09/15/09
Posts: 1380

Wow so scary. I am glad mom and baby are doing well.

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