"Unpleasant birth for new mum"

About: Blackpool Victoria Hospital / Maternity care

(as a relative),

My daughter in law was admitted to the Maternity Unit to deliver her first baby.

She told me that she felt the labour itself was confusingly mishandled, (even though she thought there was good staff attendance due to low patient numbers at the time). She told me it was allowed to drag on and on until, exhausted and with the baby in the wrong position for a normal delivery (this took 18 hours) she was given an epidural. She was then put up on a Hormone drip to speed things along. Then she finally had to endure an attempted forceps delivery with the baby by now in such a difficult position that the only way to finally save them both, she was told, was to do an emergency caesarian!

Luckily they both survived although Mum tells me she was left so traumatised and exhausted that she has still not recovered emotionally two weeks later.

I felt that the after care in the wards was shockingly inadequate.

I thought the bay of four beds was so cramped, that whilst standing at the bottom of the bed, I was jostling for space with a visitor standing at the bed of the opposite patient.

I saw numerous other bays empty or with one patient in, and the side rooms mostly were unoccupied, so I wonder why the cramming together of four caesarian Mums?

I think this is because they want to make it easy for the staff.

I feel like it certainly made it very unpleasant for some of the mothers.

From day one, my daughter-in-law got no sleep because if it was not for her own baby crying, it was some of the other ones.

So I think there has been no chance of recovering.

Some of the nurses left the new mum to attend to the baby 24/7. I thought that some of the caesarian Mums had little assistance; especially during the nights, when they were told to buzz if you need any help. My daughter-in-law told me there was no sign of any staff to check up regardless whether her buzzer was rung or not.

My daughter in law told me she had approx six hours sleep in the entire stay of five days.

She has now not been able to breast feed as she desperately wanted, as she feels like the help and interest from the staff was just not there.

I believe the baby was left dehydrated for two days, Mum being told that it didn’t matter if he wasn’t feeding for a few days as new born babies could cope without anything.

No attempt was made to give any kind of fluids, and that resulted in the baby having raised sodium levels in his blood.

This meant staying in the hospital for longer which I think has further distressed the baby, and the Mother who I feel was not being given enough information or assistance.

Mum was given anti-inflammatory drugs on an empty stomach, even though she informed the staff that they made her feel sick and were upsetting her stomach.

She is now still unwell, has no appetite, is nauseous constantly, and having to see her GP for the ongoing side effects of this.

It was with open minds that we entrusted our daughter in law and grand child to you.

There were other instances that made us all feel confused and astonished ie I saw one of the young nurse who came in to take blood from one Mum and proceeded to do so in full view of all the visitors and other Mums. I don’t think any privacy was given.

My daughter in law tells me she now wants no more children due to her experiences in Blackpool Victoria Maternity Unit.

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