The decision to get an epidural or not is a complicated one. They are meant to block much of the pain of labor by numbing the nerves of the spine. Some women desire to have as natural a birth as possible. Others worry about the complications of anesthesia or wonder if the block will cause harm to the baby.
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It’s worse when doctors ignore women’s concerns about their labor care. It can lead to a type of PTSD, as three women report in She Knows.com. The first woman planned not to get an epidural but then got one when the pain became too intense. The doctors gave her too high of a dose. When her blood pressure spiked later, the doctors blamed it on anxiety several times. However, she had a uterine infection and postpartum preeclampsia, which can be fatal. She developed PTSD due to the trauma of being ignored.
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The second woman had pre-existing OCD and symphysis pubis dysfunction, which can cause pain in the pelvis. She wanted to only use nitrous oxide, but the pain was too intense. When she finally broke down enough to ask for pain relief, and could ask for it through the pain, she was told it was too late and the baby was coming. However, they had to do an emergency C-section to get the baby out. The trauma of the experience left a lasting mark.
The last woman, who is a little person, insisted that her doctors look at her MRIs because the spines of little people are more complicated than those of normal humans. The anesthesiologist refused to look at them, then ignored her requests for more pain medication. Thankfully, the OBGYN made him listen. But then the anesthesiologist made a callous remark about sterilizing her while she was open during her C-section.
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We hope that the women in these cases, and other women in similar cases, can get compensation for what happened. Ignoring a woman’s self-reporting of symptoms opens doctors up to malpractice claims, especially if it leads to later complications.