Sunday, July 13, 2008

Pretentious Pompous Punks

At our small group last night, I heard a story that led to this one. One of our group works at an adoption agency. She was saying that one of the teenagers she is working with was being induced on Monday. I asked why thinking that something must have gone wrong. (Why else would you pull a risky maneuver such as artificially starting labor?) Her response was, "Oh the doctor was going on vacation or something." This kind of thing makes me want to label all OB/GYNSs as pretentious, pompous punks. This poor girl is already going through the stress of giving up her baby for adoption with unsupportive parents. And now because of your vacation she should endure the risk and added pain of an induced labor?! So, since I am all fired up, I am posting about birth inspired by this post from the Family Journey.

God has designed an amazing system to deliver babies from the womb that is healthy for mothers. In a skilled midwife environment where health is emphasized, as few as 2-3% require a surgical delivery. The World Health Organization recommends countries aim for 5-10% c-sections (as opposed to 20-35% in many industrialized countries). Yet, in the US the 2007 numbers show that almost 1 in 3 end up with a c-section in this country. Why?

God has designed an amazing system to deliver babies from the womb that is healthy for babies. From the article mentioned above. . .

The physiological birth process is automatic: hormones fire, the cervix gradually opens, the uterus contracts, the baby descends, muscles engage. An optimal birth, one in which mother and child emerge as healthy as can be, is one that begins spontaneously, progresses on its own and concludes with the least amount of intervention necessary.

But hospital maternity care in the U.S. is typically not supportive of this process. More than half of women are induced into labor, or it is sped up with artificial hormones; the vast majority of women labor and push in the desultory flat-on-the-back or leaning-back position; and (perhaps not surprisingly) nearly one-third of women end up giving birth through major surgery, the caesarean section.

This has led to an epidemic of pre-term births in the United States. A 2006 survey showed that the majority of babies are now born before the spontaneous onset of labor, which leaves them more prone to breathing and feeding difficulties. Caesareans are also contributing to a rising maternal death rate, announced by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention last year.

And now back to the pretentious, pompous punks. (I added the bold.)

Organized medicine can’t believe this. Dismissing the research evidence, the AMA resolution states that “the safest setting for labor, delivery and the immediate postpartum period is in the hospital” or an accredited birth center. In its own statement earlier this year, the American College of Ob/Gyns went even further, implying that women who choose home birth are selfish and irresponsible: “choosing to deliver a baby at home … is to place the process of giving birth over the goal of having a healthy baby.”

Compare that to this information in Britain’s NHS-issued handout my friend was given at her first prenatal appointment: “There is no evidence to support the common assertion that home birth is a less safe option for women experiencing uncomplicated pregnancies.” In a joint statement last year, the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and the Royal College of Midwives said, “There is no reason why home birth should not be offered to women at low risk of complications, and it may confer considerable benefits for them and their families.”

The AMA’s statement calls for legislation that could be used against women who choose home birth, possibly resulting in criminal child-abuse or neglect charges. The group says this is about safety, but with no credible research to back up its claim, this argument falls flat. Women are simply caught in a turf war over the maternity market, and it would appear that the physicians’ groups are perfectly willing to trample the modern medical ethic of patient autonomy — grounded in our legal rights to self-determination, to liberty and to privacy — in their grab for control.

The truth is drowning in a sea of lies all over this country. I think that it is our duty as Christians to stand for the truth be it the truth about childbirth, the truth about a candidate, or the truth about evolution. After all, Satan is the father of lies.


The Family Journey said...,0,1062600.story

To be fair, the article came from above link, but thanks for talking about this issue. It is becoming a rare thing for a woman to be allowed to wait for natural labor to begin. And often the induction is just for that reason- the provider's schedule.

Another variation of man attempting to be in control of the uncontrollable. And ignoring that God just might be in control.

Applied Christianity said...

Thanks for stopping by. And thanks for posting the original link. It was probably in your post, and I overlooked it.