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  1. #1
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    Default Macrocephaly- babies with head circumferences 38cms+

    Hi all,

    Just wanted to hear from mums who birthed (vb or c/section) babies with HC greater than 38cms. My DS1 had a 38cm HC (97th percentile) and was delivered vaginally with forceps. I am 34 + 5 weeks pregnant with DS2 and his HC is much bigger than my DS1- he is already 41 weeks in HC size. His current percentile is literally not on the chart and his HC will likely be 39-40cms at birth.

    If anyone has experiences with big headed babies just want to hear your birth story! I am currently debating whether to attempt another VB or elect for a c/section.

  2. #2
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    Hi - I can't remember exactly what size my DS1's head was but I do remember that the nurses came in to look at him & said things like "that came out of you?!" (I'm a very tiny person). I had him in the car on the way to the hospital so - no, didn't have any problems. 2nd time round is (generally) much easier. All the best.

    ETA - his head was def around 40cm.

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    Lilahh  (20-08-2014)

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    My first was 97th percentile. Forceps and episiotomy, normal recovery.
    My 2nd was even bigger and he got really beaten up coming out, I had an episiotomy again.
    He came out forehead/face first and his whole face was badly swollen then turned black from bruising over the next few days, thankfully he was/is perfectly fine but I had a lot of medical visitors coming to see the baby born with "head injury".
    I'd put a photo up but it's not nice.
    Needless to say I was also not in a good way, ended up with bladder and bowel prolapse which I've just had repaired 18mo on.
    I'm my case in hindsight I was the perfect candidate for c-section and I wish I had, but not sure if have made the same decision pre-birth iykwim?

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    Lilahh  (20-08-2014)

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    Quote Originally Posted by crankyoldcow View Post
    My DS had a 39.5 cm HC. He was also posterier (but turned at the last minute).

    I had a very long labour, episiotomy and forceps. A lot of that was due to other factors and not his HC.
    I had a long labour, posterior baby and episiotomy, too. I always assumed it probably had a lot to do with his HC- he struggled to get into the right position and was delivered sideways; they couldn't turn him fully. What factors contributed to your difficult labour other than HC (if you dont mind me asking)

    Quote Originally Posted by Mmumm View Post
    My first was 97th percentile. Forceps and episiotomy, normal recovery.
    My 2nd was even bigger and he got really beaten up coming out, I had an episiotomy again.
    He came out forehead/face first and his whole face was badly swollen then turned black from bruising over the next few days, thankfully he was/is perfectly fine but I had a lot of medical visitors coming to see the baby born with "head injury".
    I'd put a photo up but it's not nice.
    Needless to say I was also not in a good way, ended up with bladder and bowel prolapse which I've just had repaired 18mo on.
    I'm my case in hindsight I was the perfect candidate for c-section and I wish I had, but not sure if have made the same decision pre-birth iykwim?
    Ouch, sorry you both had a terrible time. Did your healthcare providers say that his HC was likely the reason for all the problems? My DS was born with a cut to his face and severe bruising. I am thinking that a c/section will be something I wish that I had of gone with if I attempt a VB this time and it goes badly. I just wish I knew what the odds are that it will go badly so I could decide.

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    Big heads plus long labours is what caused my issues apparently. First I laboured getting nowhere for days and was told the constant contractions for that many hours probably weakened my ligaments that hold everything in place, then along came Mr Boofhead and finished the job.
    It's a hard decision. I'm not having anymore kids but if I end up with an unplanned pregnancy I'd be requesting a csection at my first appt

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    Lilahh  (20-08-2014)

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    Reading through these replies I remember now that DS1 also had a very bruised face. I didn't even have stitches either. Yikes! I must have been lucky.
    Sorry to hear all these tough stories.

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    Lilahh  (20-08-2014)

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    Dd had a huge head (still does!). I was induced and she was born by emergency c/s after her head ruptured my uterus about 12 hours after I started on the drip. They knew she was too big for a natural birth, I was told at the start 'there is no way you'll have this child naturally, but we are a public hospital and you must be in labour for 12 hours before we can justify the cost of a cesarian'. Morons!
    At her 2 year checkup her head was above the hundredth percentile for a 4 year old lol. All the kids in my family are the same, none of them could be born naturally either. I'm pretty sure it's not big brains, just extra stubbornness that had to fit in there

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    Lilahh  (20-08-2014)

  13. #8
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    My last son had a HC of 38cm. His was a 2.5hrlabour and my only bub I didn't tear with. I think it helped that I birthed him on my knees. Good luck hun!

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    Lilahh  (20-08-2014)

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    Quote Originally Posted by crankyoldcow View Post
    Other factors for me were:

    1. At the 20 week ultrasound I was given a 1 in 200 chance of DS having down syndrome. I didn't have an amnio, but I couldn't get it out of my mind and I started panicking when I went into labour. I think it contributed to my long labour.

    2. Exdh was yelling at me a lot and generally nasty to me in labour and I think it slowed it down.

    3. I had two failed epidurals, and a failed lumbar puncture (I think that's what it was anyway) and I was pretty drugged and exhausted (36 hours of labour) when it came time to push him out. I asked for forceps - not sure how I would have gone without them.

    I'm pretty tall my drivers licence says 177cm, but I may be a bit shorter. I am blessed (?) with wide hips. I'm not sure if DS's head circumference contributed to his positioning or not as I suspect I have lots of room. He is the oldest. My girls had much smaller HCs - 37 and 36cm and they flew out. My fourth child was a c/s, but was prem and had a very small HC.

    ETA I think DS got the male genetics from both sides of the family. Both my dad and exdh have large heads. My SIL had 3 children with HCs around 40cm, no issues - fast labours, I don't think she even had any stitches.
    Your "other factors" sound like it honestly had a contribution

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    My oldest had a head circ of 38.5cm and he was posterior (and remained posterior throughout the delivery). I delivered him vaginally with no assistance. I did have an episiotomy, however. I'm not going to lie... His birth was not fun. If I could go back and do it again I would have likely at least had an epidural. Possibly considered a c section. He was also 10lbs 3oz, but I think it was more the head size and posterior factor that made his birth difficult.

    with my second, I had a late scan (at 39 weeks) where they determined the baby I was carrying was off the charts. They said she had a huge head, huge abdo circ, overall very big. I was at the specialist women's hospital in perth and they had 3 obstetricians and 2 senior sonographers all look at my baby and they all agreed. Estimated weight at 39 weeks was 4.9kg. I was told to seriously consider c section, and only because I had managed to give birth to my oldest under those circumstances did they agree to support me with a vaginal birth. they kept saying... Often growth scans are wrong, but we are confident we are not wrong now.

    fast forward to 40+6 and I vaginally delivered an 8lb 4oz baby girl with a 36cm head! Tiny! I guess my point is... Scans are often wrong. Please don't freak yourself out over it. I had an epidural for my 2nd birth as they had me so worried about shoulder dystocia that I wanted to have it as a precaution.. Well now I kind of wish I didn't..


 

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