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What other meds?

Are used for pain control in labor other than the epidural and stadol? Are they safe for the baby to be exposed?

Answer Question

Asked by HayleyGM at 4:30 PM on Jan. 12, 2009 in Pregnancy

Level 2 (4 Credits)
Answers (8)
  • Everything reaches the baby and "safe" is relative. Depending on what mom wants, there are options.
    I prefer alternative coping methods for many reasons. I can try to pass my info here, but there isn't much space... I might message it.

    Answer by doulala at 4:32 PM on Jan. 12, 2009

  • fentinol (spelling?)

    Answer by Anonymous at 4:33 PM on Jan. 12, 2009

  • doulala

    Answer by doulala at 4:38 PM on Jan. 12, 2009

  • Narcotics can be given to the laboring patient to decrease the pains of contractions. Commonly used narcotics may include Morphine, Demerol, Nubain, or Stadol. The advantage of using systemic narcotics include:
    1. Ease of administration as they can be given by intramuscular injection or by injection through the intravenous line (IV).
    2. Relatively rapid onset. (They usually begin to work in a few minutes.)
    3. Reversibility. If the patient or baby become too sleepy, a drug called Narcan can be given to reverse the effects.

    Answer by doulala at 4:39 PM on Jan. 12, 2009

  • Narcotics are often used on women that are early in labor or women who are tolerating labor fairly well, but may need a little help to control the pain of the contractions. While intravenous or intramuscular narcotics can be safe and quite helpful, they do have certain disadvantages. These disadvantages may include some of the following:

    Answer by doulala at 4:39 PM on Jan. 12, 2009

  • 1. Pain control: The narcotics do not eliminate all of the pain of the contraction, but may only dull the pain. Therefore, after receiving narcotics, some patients may be extremely sleepy between contractions, but still have significant pain during contractions.
    2. Drowsiness: With narcotics some patients may become very sleepy. This is not always a problem, however. Some patients may get some well-deserved rest. Unfortunately, some mothers may have trouble remembering the birth of her child if the narcotics make her too drowsy. This oversedation was common fifteen to twenty years ago when a narcotic was combined with a drug called scopolamine or inapsine. Though less common today, some patients may have significant drowsiness with these narcotics.

    Answer by doulala at 4:40 PM on Jan. 12, 2009

  • Infant sedation: Because these narcotics have a systemic effect (throughout the body), the newborn child may also be sedated with the mother. Usually, this is not a problem. On rare occasions, however, the infant's sedation may affect his rate of breathing. On these occasions, a drug, such as Narcan, may be given to the infant to reverse the effects of the narcotics.

    While narcotics given intravenously or intramuscularly may help dull the pain of contractions, they may not always give complete pain relief. They are often used in combination with other techniques of pain control for labor. If you have other questions about the use of intravenous or intramuscular narcotics during labor, please discuss them with your physician.

    Answer by doulala at 4:40 PM on Jan. 12, 2009

  • I didn't offer drug-free info. I think it's so important to know these options, too, because mom can truly enjoy birth and have no risks this way. Please be sure to ask if you want to learn more. :-)


    Answer by doulala at 5:01 PM on Jan. 12, 2009

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