Associate Professor from Medipol Mega University Hospital Department of Anesthesia and Reanimation. Dr. Pelin Karaaslan stated that when the epidural method is applied, the labor pains and contractions required for normal birth continue, but they do not disturb the mother. This process, which is both psychologically relaxing and reducing pain, increases the chance of completing normal birth with health.' said.
Stating that uterine contractions that allow the baby to progress in the birth canal are the cause of labor pain, Assoc. Dr. Pelin Karaaslan said, “Pain is a distressing perception situation that can arise from any part of the body. Among the most severe pains is labor pain. Relieving this pain is a very important and beautiful situation for the mother, but it should be done without affecting the labor and without harming the baby. In order to achieve this, there are methods such as giving the mother painkillers by injection, numbing the baby's way out, and applying anesthetic gas to the mother," he said.
Saying that 'epidural analgesia' is the gold standard in normal delivery, Karaaslan said, “Epidural analgesia is the most preferred, most effective, safest and most frequently used method. It does not stun the mother and does not put her to sleep. While the dose of local anesthetic drugs used is sufficient to relieve pain, it does not affect the motor functions of the mother. In mothers whose normal labor did not progress and whose birth turned to cesarean section for any reason, surgery can be performed by increasing the dose of the local anesthetic drug given without the need for an extra procedure, thanks to the pre-inserted epidural analgesia catheter. The mother will still be awake during childbirth and will be able to see and hold her baby as soon as it is born. When the epidural method is applied, although the labor pains and contractions necessary for normal birth continue, they are not at a level that will disturb the mother. Thus, the mother can actively participate in the birth. This procedure, which is both psychologically relaxing and reducing pain, increases the chance of completing a normal birth with health.” he added.
We keep the pain under control
Karaaslan stated that while epidural analgesia is applied, mothers want them to pull their knees to their stomach in a side-lying position, rest their chin on their chest and make their back hunched.
“It is very important for the mother to stay still at every stage of the procedure. The part of the waist where epidural analgesia will be applied is wiped with an antiseptic drug and the area where the procedure will be performed is anesthetized with a thin needle. The epidural space is entered using the epidural needle and a very thin soft-structured catheter is inserted through the needle into the space. The needle is removed and the catheter is left in the gap. Thus, long-term pain control can be achieved by administering medication as needed for pain control. The catheter is taped to the mother's back so that it does not come off as she moves. When the procedure is finished, the mother can lie on her back or freely perform in-bed movements.”
Reminding that the drug will show its effect 10-15 minutes after it is applied, Karaaslan said, “In order to confirm the location of the catheter, a test dose of local anesthetic drug is given. The dose required for pain control is administered after uterine contractions become regular and the cervix thins by approximately 60 to 70 percent and its opening reaches 4 to 5 centimeters. Epidural analgesia can be used to relieve postpartum pain by leaving the catheter in place, if needed, after normal delivery or after cesarean section. The removal of the catheter when it is no longer needed is definitely not painful.' he said.
Emphasizing that the epidural method will not be applied if the mother does not want it, Karaaslan said that epidural anesthesia will not be applied, 'In case of a general infection in the mother, if there is an infection in the area where the epidural will be applied and there is an increase in intracranial pressure, we do not use epidural anesthesia. Likewise, if there is a bleeding and coagulation disorder and blood thinners are used, we cannot do this practice.' gave the information.
Reminding that every attempt can have undesirable side effects, Karaslan concluded his words as follows:
Although rare, side effects of epidural analgesia may occur. Your anesthesiologist will explain the benefits, risks and unwanted effects of epidural anesthesia to you again before the procedure and will definitely get your approval. Conditions such as headache, low blood pressure, temporary weakness in the legs, infection are rare complications.'