The other part of the problem -- and a major part -- is that there is a huge amount of ignorance about what epidurals are all about , and about the potential serious effects of unrelieved pain on the health of the mother and the baby.
In an effort to combat this ignorance and to inform women about these facts, I decided to write the book. These are serious problems that have serious implications for the new mom, the baby, and the entire family. But does anyone ever consider this when they are thinking about getting an epidural?
Unless you read the scientific journals on this subject, chances are you would never come across it -- because it is seldom, if ever discussed.
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Let's take a look at one of the myths: "Epidurals slow labor. Three of the last four good scientific studies of this issue published from to showed that epidurals and spinals, if given early before four centimeters cervical dilation , may speed up labor. The fourth study showed that epidurals had no effect on the length of labor. We can speak about one person's experience or another person's experience, but to really figure out the truth, we have to look at the issue scientifically.
When this has been done, when well-designed scientific studies have been conducted, it has become clear that today's "walking" epidurals and spinals don't slow down labor. End of story.
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Every woman needs to decide for herself what type of pain relief, if any, she wants when she delivers her baby. There is not necessarily a right answer or a wrong answer. The answer is different for each woman. And each woman should decide for herself. But to make an informed decision, she needs to know the facts. Michele Zipp March 15, at AM.
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