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is a pelvic exam safe at 39 weeks?

my doc was sick today so i was checked by a diff doc which i didnt mind but she wants me to go back at 39 weeks for a pelvic exam to see if im dilating (which i know im 1cm dilated since i got checked after telling my doc i was having pains) i dont really want another exam since it was very uncomfortable but i think, it must be for a reason right?

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Asked by ShadowXX at 9:36 PM on Sep. 2, 2010 in Pregnancy

Level 4 (50 Credits)
Answers (16)
  • um yeah why wouldn't it be?? They checked me once a week for like the last month... how else are they going to tell whether you are dilated and if you lost your plug?

    Answer by MommaofH2 at 9:37 PM on Sep. 2, 2010

  • You can refuse all pelvic exams. It tells them nothing. You are far enough along to not worry about if you dilate or not. They can also introduce bacteria to you or the baby. Just skip it.

    Answer by BradenIsMySon at 9:38 PM on Sep. 2, 2010

  • There is no reason to know if you dilate or not since it means nothing. You can be dilated for weeks on end or nothing until the second labor starts.

    Answer by BradenIsMySon at 9:39 PM on Sep. 2, 2010

  • Yes it is safe, but if you don't want to have one than you should talk to your doctor and tell him that, ask him why he feels that you should have one. I always like to get the doctors opinions and reasoning but I feel that it's your body and you deserve to get the ultimate say on what should be done to it

    Answer by Liz132 at 9:40 PM on Sep. 2, 2010

  • no there is no good reason. it doesn't matter how dilated you are, it won't predict you labor. I had a friend that was at 4 for 3wks! They also increase your risk of infection.  Here is a link to help you understand it more.  I myself was checked at 38wks with my first son and wasn't dilated at all.  The doc wanted to strip my membranes because she thought it was going to be such a long time before I had him.  I said no because I had plans that weekend.  Anyway that was a Friday...not dilated, nothing stripped.  I had my son on Sunday!  so go figure!


    Answer by Lynette at 9:43 PM on Sep. 2, 2010

  • I think you should go along with what your dr says. It is very late in the game to be playing around with your wishes versus the drs game plan. Dont you trust your dr by now? I know its uncomfortable, but they are doing it for a reason. This dr is in charge of you, your labor, your delivery and your baby. Let them do their job.

    Answer by Anonymous at 9:47 PM on Sep. 2, 2010

  • They're safe even during labor, yes. If you don't want another exam then inform your regular OB that you don't want one.

    Answer by JazzlikeMraz at 10:04 PM on Sep. 2, 2010

  • Not every OB says the same thing regarding Pelvic exams. Some agree that it isn't necessary if you are having a generally normal and healthy pregnancy. Some may mention the possibility of bacteria introduction. If you're not at 40 weeks or in labor, I don't see any reason to do that, or stripping the membrane, I agree with Liz132 on that one as well. However, it is your pregnancy, not the Drs. Ask your OB if it's necessary. If it's not, don't do it. I was dilated at 2 for 2 weeks then 4 for 1 week. I shot from 4-9 in 4 hours with the first and 2-9 in 9 hours with the second.

    Answer by TJandACsMom at 10:14 PM on Sep. 2, 2010

  • It is safe but it has been my experienc (both hearing from friends and personally) that sometimes when a doc checks you it can cause your body to go into labor. My friends doc refers to it as "stirring the honeypot" As miserable as I was, I wanted my baby to "cook" for as long as possible. I didnt get these end of pregnancy checks and my baby came 2 days before her due date. I had an easy pregnancy and a straightforward labor. My little sis went to the hospital maybe 10 times before her baby was actually born but with me it was my water broke and then it was time. No false alarms at all

    Answer by teagansmom10 at 10:49 PM on Sep. 2, 2010

  • No there isn't any "good" reason. It tends to have made up excuses for intervening, lol.

    Usually it doesn't harm anything physically. But it can take a big toll, have some (sometimes hefty) impact on the outcome of mom's birth experience.
    It tends to lead from one intervention to another... a "cascade" a downward spiral.

    What would happen if you got checked (again)?
    You'd eventually have your baby.
    What would happen if you never got checked?
    Same thing. You'd eventually have your baby.
    (But probably with less stress and pressure to "perform against the Clock.")

    Lots of providers never offer/do vaginal exams. I have had a couple of babies and never any cervix checks. I love that I have hired care providers that avoid unnecessary interventions~

    Answer by doulala at 11:26 PM on Sep. 2, 2010

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