Baby News and Info on Shoulder Dystocia

Today Alan went with me to my ob/gyn appointment.  All is set for a June 19th c-section.  My doctor was able to look it up and tell me which doctor would be doing my surgery, and we set up my next appointment with him so that I can meet him before the delivery.  He has the longest service record of any soldier serving in the Army.  JD will be delivered by the man who cuts the Army birthday cake each year at the Pentagon. My doctor said that if she were to have a c-section, this is who she would want to do it, so that made me feel pretty good!
I told Dr. Asato how people are constantly fussing over the large size of my belly.  She shook her head and said, “The only thing anyone should ever say to a pregnant woman is, ‘You look great.”  I so agree!  She said I looked normal for 31 weeks to her, and I measured exactly 31 cm, right on schedule.
This doc and my mid-wife have both said, each time that we discuss it, that most any doctor would recommend a c-section for me since I had the TWO third- degree lacerations, due to shoulder dystocia. I’m glad I’m dealing with some understanding docs.  Perhaps it helps that they’re women.

So I got to thinking, “Why do the nurses and doctors panic so when they realize my babies are stuck at the shoulders?”  And of course, I googled it:

For those of you who may have trouble reading the blurry words on the above picture, it describes the dangers of this phenomenon, where the shoulder is impacted behind the pubic symphysis.  This is what happened with both Joshua and Caleb.
Dangers:  Entrapment of cord (also happened with Caleb), inability of child’s chest to expand properly, and severe brain damage or death if child is not delivered within minutes.
All of our family on both sides have been supportive of my decision to do a c-section, but in case anyone was wondering why, I think that explains it pretty well!
This puts the baby at great risk for brain damage and death.
Caleb was actually  born purple and not breathing. Thankfully, my doctor was able to quickly revive him. There were lasting effects, though.
…..So if all goes as planned this will be my very FIRST non-emergency delivery, with no running medical staff, no flashing red lights, no general sense of panic, you get the idea.
Editor’s note: Great news! John David was born with no complications whatsoever. You can read his birth story here.


  • You are doing what is best for you and your baby!!! That is what is most important!!!! Everybody else can mind their own business!!!
    Also, I my first delivery was C-section, not planned, but necessary, he was breach. Going in knowing what you are doing I think would be easier!! =) Recovery was slower, but it is like a major surgery…. as long as Alan is taking time off you will be fine!! =)
    AND….you are completely adorable, so don't give those negative people another thought!!!

  • Thank you, Bretta, you are SO sweet and encouraging!! Hope your leg is doing much much better!

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