cervical checks?

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Chris_85's picture
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cervical checks?

so obviously some of you have had cervical checks already but i guess i waw wondering when does your provider start them?
I know they can be unnecessary too early? thoughts?

Dr. offered to check since they were doing the group b strep test today, which i wasn't expecting since i will only be 35 weeks, but i guess it just caught me off guard.

anyway I declined I am thinking maybe next time but only because i will be close to 37 weeks.
i have heard some are really uncomfortable... but I never had one with either of these Dr's... and it never hurt with the midwives when i was prego with Lilly.

I have also heard horror stories of Dr's who just go ahead and strip/sweep membranes after 38 weeks without permission.

Thoughts... comments.... stories... experiences?

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I would like to avoid cervical checks for as long as possible. With DS, my midwife didn't check at my 36 week appt. Then when I was being admitted to hospital next day, I found out from OB there I was 4cm dilated and completely effaced...boy was I surprised. I really want to reach full term so in my mind the less they mess around up there maybe it will improve my chances, but that may just be wishful thinking and certainly wasn't the case with DS Blum 3

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My dr hasn't done any yet. I've been thinking it was really weird. When I was pregnant for both of mine before, the midwives checked every appointment. Even the early ones. To be sure it was all closed up in there.
I guess opinions have changed on doing that now?
Anyway, I was thinking I'd ask her the next time I'm there what is the norm.

Lil Momma 1991's picture
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I have had 2 this pregnancy only because I have been in the hospital twice. Normal checks are not done until 38 weeks unless there's a reason for them earlier. My OB has expressed he would like to do one at 37 for me because of my BP, and I agreed. My OB with my son started them at 34 weeks, which made me really uncomfortable but I never declined because, well honestly my age I felt she knew best.

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My OB typically starts them at 36 weeks (with Group B test) unless there's a reason to check earlier on. She always asks me first before she checks me. They really mean nothing as far as telling you when your going to go into labor...but I always get checked out of curiosity. I know by now not to put too much energy/thought into whatever the outcome;) They can be uncomfortable- especially if you have a posterior cervix, but, I wouldn't say it's any worse than a pap. Membrane sweeps are just as uncomfortable, but again- I wouldn't say unbearable by any means (IMO). I think a lot of it depends on how forceful your doctor is with the sweeping and how big their hands are, lol. With my boys- my OB was a male doctor and he was not a small man, lol. I had sweeps done by him, which were more painful than with my daughter, but they worked! I plan to get a sweep done at my next appointment on Tues. so hopefully it will work again! This time I have a petite female doctor, so she may have to be a little more harsh. I've never had a doctor do a sweep without my consent- in fact, I'm usually the one that brings it up.

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"jski88" wrote:

. I've never had a doctor do a sweep without my consent- in fact, I'm usually the one that brings it up.

Sorry, going to thread jack for just a moment.
Have you had one done before? Do they hurt? I am considering bringing this up with my OB but I never did with my first.

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I've had two checks so far this pregnancy (a week apart)... A to check to see if induction will work (high, tight and closed isn't favorable) since I have some issues and we are inducing at 39weeks 2 days if he isn't here before that for my health. We'll do another on Tuesday (my next apt). I've never been swept and trust my ob as she asks before doing anything including starting the blood pressure cuff!

I will say that hand size definitely effects how comfy a check is! My first ob was a big/tall guy with long fingers so he didn't have to work too hard, the on call doc with ds1 was tiny! And practically had to get her whole arm in to check. My second ob was an average sized guy and he was fine, this one is a tallish woman and while not as comfy as the guys isn't nearly as bad as the tiny woman...

I've also found that my comfort level played a part too... If I was relaxed and felt in "control" it was much easier... I also make it a point to talk with my doc about emotional concerns not just physical so they know too. If your nervous let them know and they can help (either by checking in more, "ready?", "now we're gonna.." Or by going slower and explaining more detail of what to expect what you might feel...) they have an easier job if you're more comfy too so it's win win. I've had friends who have trauma histories and their docs will have them insert their own speculums or transvaginal probes or whatnot when they can to make it easier.

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"Lil Momma 1991" wrote:

Sorry, going to thread jack for just a moment.
Have you had one done before? Do they hurt? I am considering bringing this up with my OB but I never did with my first.

Yes. I had it done with all three of my kids. (Twice with d/d) It worked for my oldest d/s and for d/d. It didnt seem to work for my 2nd d/s- but it may not have had enough time since I was induced a couple days later. I went into labor (I think) 3 days after.
It wasn't super painful, just not pleasant. As I said, I think it depends on your doctor too. With d/d the second time he (my OB) sweepers them- he warned me he was going to be a bit more vigorous. So I was prepared. I find the more relaxed you are the less it hurts. It wasn't that bad though- otherwise I wouldn't be doing it for a 5th time;)

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My office starts them at 36/37 weeks with a planned vaginal delivery. They elected to check me because i have a history of very fast delivery and i have been having contractions for so long. He said with scheduled c/s they dont like to do them because of the risk of "stirring things up".

I never had the membrane strip before, but from hearing others the discomfort is definitely different with different docs.

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it was Great to see all your replies and i don't really care hijack away!! I was just wondering, in talking with my mom i think the only time i was checked was after i lost my mucus plug but heck i can't remember i just know it never hurt and was not excessive. and during labor of coarse.

susan ~ that does seem odd for them to check every time.

Well as anxious as i know i will get, While i will be tired of beeing pregnant and excited to meet baby, i really don't think i want membranes to be striped/swept unless they were talking induction, and even then i would try more natural ways to jump start labor.

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My doctor will probably ask at my next visit if I want to check (will be 36 and have the group B test done). She usually does offer then but unless I feel like baby has dropped, I'll probably wait. I'm guessing I'll be up to my due date or after before anything really gets going.

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I chose to skip the cervical check at my 36 week appt and talked to my OB about my wish to hold off on checks unless there was a medical concern, I was in labor or past my due date. Now just awaiting my GBS results.

Oh funny story and a little (okay a lot) TMI but I thought it was funny. So last week I passed what I thought was part of my mucus plug on my underwear pad (mucusy, clearish blob that was obviously different from my usual discharge). So I was thinking maybe my cervix is changing but haven't been having any contraxs, not even BH recently. Told DH and he was basically like "thanks for sharing" meaning he didn't really want to know Blum 3 Then earlier this week we DTD and later that day I again had the same mucusy stuff so then I started to think well maybe it wasn't my plug but semen b/c we had DTD the day prior to the first mucus appearance. I brought it up with my OB who agreed it probably wasn't my plug. He also said he has had several patients convinced that their water was leaking/broke when actually it was just fluids after recently having sex. Anyway, hopefully didn't gross anyone out who decided to read that. Working in a hospital my gross out tolerance is pretty high Blum 3

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"xtinagreen" wrote:

Anyway, hopefully didn't gross anyone out who decided to read that. Working in a hospital my gross out tolerance is pretty high Blum 3

haha! Mine is usually pretty high too--and that is funny Smile My husband reacts the same way!! Pretty much just says "yay, thanks for sharing" whenever I share gross info with him Wink

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lol My Dh is like waiting for me to share things.... Last week i caught him waiting outside the bathroom door .. when i asked him about it he said "I was just staying close by in case you needed me." I was like well stop it cus every time your out in the hall it makes me nervous. I can holler if i need you. "Oh well I just want to be there for you if anything happens."

Sweet but at the time i was completely annoyed.

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"Chris_85" wrote:

lol My Dh is like waiting for me to share things.... Last week i caught him waiting outside the bathroom door .. when i asked him about it he said "I was just staying close by in case you needed me." I was like well stop it cus every time your out in the hall it makes me nervous. I can holler if i need you. "Oh well I just want to be there for you if anything happens."

Sweet but at the time i was completely annoyed.

Haha...I wish DH was more attentive, well maybe not standing outside the bathroom door waiting attentive. I woke up couple nights ago with a leg cramp that would not ease up so I got up and tried to stretch and walk it off in our dark bedroom, all while quietly moaning & groaning because the cramp hurt on top of my sore body. It took several minutes for DH to stir awake and notice I was up. He asked if I was in labor, I said no I had a bad leg cramp, and he just rolled over and went back to sleep. He also took my body pillow while I was up!! I had to wrestle it away from him when I went back to bed :annoyed:

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Nothing's usually offered here till after 40 weeks, but for me they're going to have a look at 39+5 because they don't want me to go over 41 weeks due to it being a VBAC. I'm very curious about what's going on up there, lol! I feel a lot of stabby pains and I know her head is right down. So I hope something is going on. I'm only 37 and 2 though.