August 18, 2007 § 1 Comment
Subject: [independentchildbi rth] Post-term pregnancy
Here are some facts on post-term pregnancy and
As you know, this is a BIG issue for most pregnant
women these days. In the book Born in the USA by
Marsden Wagner, M.D., M.S. (which I recommend everyone
read – along with Henci Goer’s book The Thinking
Woman’s Guide to a Better Birth), he makes sense of
the induction epidemic as well as the state of U.S.
A normal pregnancy lasts 38 to 42 weeks and only 3
percent go beyond 42 weeks. No one thinks to stop a
labor at 37 to 38 weeks but many want to induce at
40.5 to 41.5 weeks. What are the facts? What can we
tell our clients?
Dr. Wagner has researched this and many other
disturbing issues in his book. Citing a valid study
done in 1996 looking at 1,800 postdate pregnancies
that found no increase in baby deaths as well as no
increase in complications compared with births of
babies born between 38 and 42 weeks. He states:
“The truth is that only about 10 percent of babies at
more than forty-three weeks’ gestation get into
“Women are not told that only 3 percent of
pregnancies, if left alone, will go beyond forty-two
weeks and that only 10 percent of those babies past
forty-three weeks get into trouble —- 10 percent of
3 percent = 0.3 percent of babies will get into
“It is ridiculous to think that two-thirds of American
women have such lousy uteruses that they must be
whipped into shape with drugs in order to have
It has been determined that an induction rate of <10
percent is medically necessary. The rate of induction
in the USA is over 40 percent. Our local (Santa Clara
County) rates range from a [self reported] rate of 40
to 5 percent [three of our hospitals refused to give
this information] .
This becomes a much bigger issue when Misoprostol
(Cytotec) is used. Most (if not all) of our hospitals
are using this drug that is not approved for this use
by both the manufacturer or the FDA. Dr. Wagner said
that the use of this drug goes beyond “off label” use
(which is common in U.S. obstetrics) but is being used
Dr. Wagner suggests that the only two “last” methods
of quality control are —— “educating the public
and litigation”. I vote for educating the public first
and litigation as a last resort.
August 16, 2007 § Leave a comment
i just finished reading fiona giles’s fresh milk. she is from australia and so the book focuses alot around stories from australia but also from other parts of the angloworld including the us. i read it last night while i was breastfeeding aza. i started thinking about nursing, breast milk, pumping and the entire maternal experience from different angles. for instance i have always had a visceral reaction against the idea of nursing past the age of two. really a child who is walking and talking and coming up to me to nurse turned me off. i dont mind it too much when other women around me nurse their toddlers, but i can hear the judgemental voice in my softly whispering: isnt she too old? but after reading this book i had a greater appreciation for why mothers would choose to continue nursing. and i know that the who says that women should nurse until the child is at least two years old. so i guess i too can relax that little voice in my head a bit more and wonder if aza really is not ready to wean at around 12 months, will i decide or her? aza is so good at knowing what she needs.
i also thought about drinking my milk. i have tasted it before. surprisingly sweet. like vanilla soy milk. vanilla soy milk is one of my favorite drinks ever and even before i had tasted my own milk i thought that breastmilk should taste like soy milk, but i assumed that in reality it would taste bland or bitter more like herb tea. i only tasted a drop or two, but i gained an instant appreciation why we love sugar, vanilla, dairy, cheese, ice cream, fatty foods. i read about putting mamamilk in tea or coffee or using it to make icecream/icemilk and pie. maybe i will pump a bit and try. especially since the milk is a tonic for people with weak immune systems and conjunctivitis.
and i know that urine is healthy for the skin and internal body systems. and now breastmilk can help heal us as adults and children.