Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Eye-opening little nugget

I was googling "rhombus of michaelis" to see what else was out there on the web and found an archive link apparently documenting a letter written by a chiropractor, Todd Gastaldo, to Jean Sutton. I guess they were in some disagreement about what happens to the pelvis when the rhombus of michaelis moves, but that's not my reason for posting.

They were in total agreement that lying on the back or semi-reclined on the tailbone prevents the birth canal from opening to its full capacity--substantially. Apparently by 20 to 30%! That's huge. Then the doc gave the following eye-opening observation, calling it "obvious OB crime" (and I would add that OBs aren't the only perpetrators--midwives are also to blame sometimes):
OBs are slicing vaginas en masse (euphemism "routine episiotomy")--surgically/FRAUDULENTLY inferring everything possible is being done to OPEN birth canals--even as they CLOSE birth canals − up to 30%.

OBs are slicing abdomens en masse ("c−section")-- surgically/fraudulently inferring everything possible has been DONE to open birth canals--even as they CLOSE birth canals − up to 30%.

Now--to be sure--allowing the birth canal to open the "extra" up to 30% is not going to prevent all caesareans and episiotomies--but it can't hurt. Incidentally, when babies' shoulders get stuck, OBs KEEP the birth canal closed--even as they say they are opening it maximally.

OBs don't charge for their mass vagina slicing--but it is known to increase severe perineal tears by 50X--and perineal tearing is the most common reason for hospitalization of women:

"The most common diagnosis for hospitalization among all women is trauma to
perineum due to childbirth"
It blows my mind that we just lie down and take this... over and over and over and over and over and over again.

When will we demand that these crimes end?


Deanna said...

I'm grateful that you mentioned that midwives are also to blame sometimes. In general terms, midwives are more supportive of natural birth than OBs. But, my experience has been the opposite. I planned for a natural birth with my first, using a midwife and ended up with a C-section. This time around I have an OB and she is so much more supportive of natural birth than the midwives I saw were.

OrganicMama said...

This and your previous post are SO IMPORTANT to giving birth more easily! I read the same thing in "Birthing from Within" Pam England.
Though, I will say, I was upright through most of my second delivery, I did lie down in the tub for the final hour or so - because it relieved the pressure. I would have preferred a birthing tub where I could be upright but circumstances at the time prevented it. I hope to do it again someday - in the birthing tub.

OrganicMama said...

Now you've gone and got me fired up!

Buscando la Luz said...

Thanks for the shout out, OrganicMama! :-)

Melissa said...

I was wondering about the "semi-reclined" statement. I have had 2 vaginal, natural, hospital births with an OB. Both experiences were completely positive. My birth plan was followed and no arguments. I intentionally chose a supportive OB. However, I pushed my first in the side lying position and my second semi reclined, holding my own legs and I pushed 3 times. She was 8lbs 12 oz. Why are they saying this position limiting as well? I know flat on your back is no good but if you were giving birth on a bed that you would have to be semi reclined to push baby out. I was allowed to push in any position and that was what felt right.

Buscando la Luz said...


I've pushed all of my babies out semi-reclined. The first two took 20 min or so and the last was just a few minutes.

Semi-reclined isn't so much "bad," it's just not ideal. And I think it depends on the size of the baby's head and shoulders and the mother's pelvis as well.

For some women and babies, semi-reclined is a recipe for disaster and they really need that extra 20-20% of space in the pelvis to deliver smoothly.

Samantha said...

Oh, I am not crazy! I have given birth three times and the first time I had an epidural, episiotomy, vaccumming-you name it(minus the c-section). Then with baby number 2, same thing.
With baby number 3, I birthed natually with NO IV. I was free to move as I pleased and delivered a perfect 9lb 9 oz baby. Movement and having my OB out of town was the best thing that ever happened to me.
This information is so important for women and men to know. My husband is convinced the natural birth is the BEST way to have a baby.
Thank you!

RO said...

mmmmYEAH! I love this post. I gave birth twice, at home, planned, with a midwife, laboring and delivering in birthing tubs full of warm glorious water, free to move as I pleased, squatting, kneeling, standing, moving around. I am 5'3" and my first baby was 8.5 lbs; my second was 9.5. I had no tearing with either of them. I laugh when people say "Oh I had to have a c-section because my pelvis is too small." Really? Are you SURE about that???

My second child had shoulder dystocia - his head was born but his shoulder was stuck firmly against my pelvis. Had I been numb from the waist down I can only imagine the trauma that would have ensued. Realizing what was going on, my midwife commanded me to stand up. I stood up, with her and hubby's help, which enabled me to utilize gravity AND a fully open pelvis while standing/squatting/bending forward to free my little guy. WHOOOSH. Yeehaw! Baby in arms, vagina intact, thank you very much.

Needless to say, I have a very strong testimony of freedom of movement during labor and delivery :)