"St Michaels Hospital Bristol - Maternity Care - C Section"

About: St Michael's Hospital / Maternity care

(as the patient),

I recently had my baby by planned Caesarian section at St Michaels Hospital, Bristol. (19 June 2008)

My baby was in a breech position. My options were clearly and carefully explained by my consultant (Rachel Leevling) and I decided to have an ECV (attempt to turn the baby by external manipulation). Rachel was very careful to ensure I felt comfortable with the decision and alleviated many of my concerns about the procedure.

Therefore the team at the St Michaels delivery suite attempted an ECV - where they try to turn the baby at 36 weeks. Mr Mills performed the procedure and the whole team were very calm and explained everything really clearly. Unfortunately the procedure failed to turn the baby (it was unlikely to be successful due to the position of the baby and space in the womb). However the way the procedure was carried out and the contact with the staff made me feel confident about their recommendation that I have a c-section.

The C-Section went so calmly. The Senior House Officer (Ed Coates) who performed the operation, anaesthetist,(Amelia Pritchard) midwife (Clare Hipkin) and nurses were fantastic, good humoured and explained everything so clearly.

I was allowed to play a CD in the operating theatre which calmed me down and my husband was present. When the baby was born I was given skin to skin contact almost immediately and allowed to take photos. During the next few hours my baby remained skin to skin for the majority of the time.

I was encouraged to breast feed and did breast feed once I was back in recovery (about 1-2 hrs after birth) My pain relief and care was excellent.

I was transferred onto the ward (Ward 74) about 3-4 hours after the section was completed. Whilst on the ward the standard of care was excellent. I felt the midwives and nurses were always willing to help and answer my (many) questions and were on call day and night. Also there were opportunities for both myself and my husband to learn basic childcare - such as bathing baby.

The standard of cleanliness was good and the staff worked together as a good team. Security also seemed to be excellent.

Gemma Clayton, Jo Pullin, and K Lovell in particular provided me with excellent care and advice.

I left the hospital after 4 days but was given plenty of help and advice before leaving which made me feel much more prepared for looking after my lovely new daughter.

During the first night at home I was concerned about the baby so rang the nighttime contact number and spoke to the midwife on call at St Michaels. The advice I received was calm and reassuring and helped me settle my baby.

Overall I have been delighted with the care at St Michaels and wish to congratulate the hospital on their high standards.

I am healing very well - almost back to normal and have had virtually no pain from my operation.

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