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It is an injection of pain relief directly into the spine. It numbs your legs and lower torso but still enables you to push. It is a shot right into your spine.. I have had one and my suggestion is if you are thinking of having one go ahead with the epidural that way it stays in and you dont have to go through the pain of later getting another shot in your spine..with the epidural they can regulate how much pain medicine you need through the whole delivery An epidural will alleviate ALL PAIN during labor! Pushing is a bit tricky because you are numb from the waist down. You are given the epidural and a "top-up" button to continue pumping in pain relief. I kept this up for ten hours, until it was time to push, then I stopped topping up. By the time my son was born, about two hours later, the numbness had worn off a bit, but still not much pain. I highly recommend the epidural- having pain relief doesn't make you less of a woman or mother or any such nonsense! No pain= no pain!!!! I have been a midwife for 26 years and if a woman wants a natural childbirth I will support her all the way. However some women don't or are advised not to. The epidural shot does not actually go into the spinal cord but into the space around it and most of the time it works very well. Sometimes it can be balanced so you can be painfree but still be able to move. If it is possible that you may need an emergency C-section it just needs to be topped-up. I had an epidural for both my labours because I had high blood pressure. The first time I had a big baby in an awkward position who took a lot of pushing, but I had a normal delivery. The second time with twins I was quite ill but as they were smaller I had a very quick easy labour.

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โˆ™ 2006-01-25 11:56:24
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Q: What is the epidural shot that you may take during labor?
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Procedure, part 1Your understanding of what happens during labor and delivery as well as your attitude toward it - affect the amount of pain you feel while giving birth. The breathing methods and relaxation techniques you learn in childbirth-education class may reduce your need for pain medication, but you won't know whether you'll need drugs until you're in the delivery room.The most common form of pain medication used in labor is an epidural block. During the procedure, anesthetic is injected into the epidural space near your spinal cord, temporarily numbing your lower body.Procedure, part 2An epidural usually causes little discomfort and is administered while you are sitting up or lying on your side, with your back curved outward.After you receive the epidural, your caregiver will closely monitor your blood pressure, heart rate, and your baby's heart rate.Procedure, part 3Before you get an epidural, your doctor will wash your back with antiseptic and determine the best place for the injection. Next, you'll get a shot of local anesthetic to numb the spot where the epidural needle will be inserted.Procedure, part 4The doctor will carefully insert an epidural needle between your vertebrae, thread a hollow tube through the needle, and remove the needle, leaving the catheter in place. Anesthetic is then administered through the catheter.Procedure, part 5Epidurals are very effective at relieving labor pain, but they have some drawbacks: First, they take up to 20 minutes to administer and take effect. Epidurals can slow labor if they're given too soon, and being numb from the waist down may make it harder for you to push your baby out. Unless you are given a "walking epidural" or "narcotic spinal", you'll need to stay in bed for your entire labor. Epidurals can also cause your blood pressure to drop, which in turn may slow your baby's heartbeat. To prevent this, you'll be given intravenous fluids and may be asked to lay on your side to help your blood circulate. To be on the safe side, your doctor will keep close tabs on your baby by continuously monitoring your blood pressure and his heart rate.Procedure, part 6The major benefit of having an epidural is that you can remain awake, alert, and almost totally pain-free while actively participating in your baby's birth. You can also relax and conserve your energy during a long labor. To lower the odds of side effects for you and your baby, your doctor will likely give you the lowest effective dose.Reviewed ByReview Date: 09/12/2011Linda J. Vorvick, MD, Medical Director, MEDEX Northwest Division of Physician Assistant Studies, University of Washington, School of Medicine; Susan Storck, MD, FACOG, Chief, Eastside Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Group Health Cooperative of Puget Sound, Bellevue, Washington; Clinical Teaching Faculty, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Washington School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.

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