View Full Version : Spinal damage from Epidural
My poor friend :no: She had her baby by c/s a few weeks ago to avoid labour pain. The anaesthetist took 4 goes to get her epidural right, and then she had a general.
When she woke up, she couldn't feel her feet or any of her right leg. They said it would be okay. That sometimes it happens and not to worry about it. She had splitting headaches, felt sick and then on her last day at hospital she needed her husband to help her to walk to the carpark.
She phoned me 3 days after coming home from hospital and said her right foot was dragging and that her back was so sore that her OB had sent her home on pain killers and now she couldn't breastfeed.
5 days after coming home she lost all feeling in her legs and had to call an ambulance to take her back to the hospital. An Xray showed major damage and escaped fluid. She needed emergency surgery to relieve the pressure.
She spent 10 days in hospital without her new baby. She's now severely depressed about missing her baby's first weeks. She's really angry that everyone else got to bond with her baby and is convincd that her baby hates her. It's also now looking like she needs to go back in for further surgery to fix an infection from the operation.
Has anyone else had this? I'm not sure how to help her because part of me feels angry with her for allowing it to happen to herself (elective surgery), and the other half wishes I could take all of her pain away.
You lost me on the "letting it happen" comment.
It happened to me and it was awful.
Be supportive and leave out the anger there is no need for it.:no:
Let her know that a bond takes time and she has not lost the opportunity. They will still fall in blissful love.
She is going to go through a real rollercoaster and will go from anger to self blame. Let her know its NOT her fault.
Try and work on your own anger or stay away as you coudl really hurt her right now.
:iagree: Be there for her....be the strenght of support....there is no need to be angry at her..."No need at all"........It was her personal decision on how to have bubs ( elective ), not yours......your friend needs your support, not to be judged how she had her beautiful bubs!
oh how horrible !
i would be like her more focussed on how miserable i am about missing the first weeks of my babies life and missing that bonding experience.
that is something that can affect her relationship with her child forever if not treated right.
she desperately needs her baby to be with her as much as possible..is there anyway that can happen?
i feel so sad for her.
This is not about my feelings. It is about how I can help her. Staying away is not going to happen. I will support her no matter what.
While I can see your point of view.. I also agree with the being supportive and keeping the anger out of it! It's not going to help at all right now.. she needs support right now!
I am sorry she is going through this.. A friend of Dh's still has numbness down one side of her body from her epi.. she can walk and move around but she says its still numb over a year later.
She might need to talk about it over and over again (like I did although I didn't have complications from my epi) and just let her talk and let it all out, just having you be there and listen will mean a lot to her.
You also need to understand she didn't let it happen. She chose a way of having her baby that might be different to yours. Things can go wrong in every type of birth. Don't let her know you feel that way. I had an epi and people made me feel horrible for my choice and it damaged our relationships..and I didn't even have problems after the epi.
I hope things get back on track for her soon.
Unfortunately it is one of the rare side effects that can happen with an epidural. I'd imagine she's very shocked that she's one of the few that this happens to as most people don't tend to believe that something like this will actually happen to them.
She could be carrying a bit of guilt about having had an elective c section. She may not be either, but we women do tend to blame ourselves when something goes wrong so I'm tipping she is putting blame on herself, thinking that she could have avoided it had she only done things vaginally.
Offer help around the house. I could've done with that & I didn't have the problem your friend does so I'm sure she could do with it, particularly if she's getting depressed. Just be there for her to discuss it all with & keep your own feelings out of it.
:( How awful for her.... Unfortunately it is a very real risk involved, there are real risks involved with everything.
Having to be away from her baby that long is awful, I can't even begin to imagine how much that must have hurt her. :(
I don't know what you can do, are you able to enrol her in a baby massage class or something to help her bond with her baby?
give her support... it could so quickly become PND as it is SO hard to bond with a baby when you miss so much in the beggining...
i think i was SOOOOOOOOOo close to being where your friend is... i had about 7 attempts to get mine in, a disgusting amount of pain, and locals and time (50 minutes:eek:) and failing that a general.... my back was sooo bad, nerve damage... and i am convinced it was the anethetists fault!
be supportive... she will need it:yes:
Poor woman. She's going to need lots of support in order to heal.
How terrible for that to happen to your friend :no:. I think just be there for her, support her, let her know you want to help & generally do what you think will help her. It's awful that she feels she has missed precious bonding time with her bub, which she has, but remind her that there is much much more time for bonding & getting to know each other. It's a sad situation having to miss those precious first weeks with your new bub my heart goes out to her.
Poor thing :( The risks are always minimized but they do happen to some people. A friend recently had problems with an epi as well, though not quite as bad as that.
I desperately wanted a natural birth with my son but needed an emergency c-sec and despite having a very experienced anesthetist who got it right first go I still had a lot of residual numbness (couldn't feel top half of right leg or right buttock for months). The nurses weren't very reassuring. I was told it was VERY common and the feeling may come back or may not I'd just have to wait and see.
Hope your friend feels better soon and hugs to you for being supportive :)
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