My epidural wore off DURING my C-section – I felt doctors pulling my stomach apart


A MUM was in absolute agony when her epidural wore off midway through her C-section, meaning she couldn’t even scream out in pain.

Dog groomer Jodie Marsden, 27, from Wakefield, West Yorks, has vowed to never have more kids after her traumatic experience.

Jodie Marsden’s epidural wore off DURING her C-section – leaving her traumatised
The mum, pictured with husband Matt, 34, has vowed not to have anymore kids

After two days of very slow labour, the mum-of-one’s heartbeat started to dip with every contraction – so doctors rushed her in for an emergency C-section on Friday 13th last month.

They gave her an epidural, an anaesthetic around the spinal cord, which worked at first – but gradually Jodie started to feel pain.

By the time she realised what was going on, Jodie was in so much pain her screams came out as a whisper – and she says she could feel doctors “pulling my stomach apart”.

Speaking exclusively to Fabulous Digital, Jodie said: “The whole experience was absolutely terrifying and I am totally traumatised from the birth.

Baby Arthur was born healthy on Friday 13th last month

“I’m never having another baby ever again, that’s for sure.

“I could feel them juggling about inside me – one person was shoving down on the top of my stomach while another was pulling the baby out.

The whole experience was absolutely terrifying and I am totally traumatised from the birth

Jodie Marsden27

“It was agony. I could feel the clamp inside me and the suction going around and I was really struggling to breathe.

“I could feel them actually pulling my stomach apart as they were ripping the muscles. I was in extreme pain.

“It felt like I was screaming, but my partner said it was only coming out as a whisper. Luckily the doctors could see I was uncomfortable.”

Matt cared for Arthur while Jodie was recovering from her C-section
Jodie couldn’t hold her son until the next day

Aside from Jodie’s pain, the birth went smoothly and she welcomed a healthy baby boy called Arthur.

Jodie and husband Matt, 34, previously fell pregnant by accident after their wedding in September 2018 – but the mum miscarried at seven weeks.

As they celebrated their first Christmas as a married couple, the pair discovered they were pregnant again.

I’m never having another baby ever again, that’s for sure

Jodie Marsden27

Jodie said: “We didn’t actually plan on having children so soon after the wedding, as I’m a very career driven person and wanted to focus on my dog grooming business.

“I’ve never really been a maternal person, I couldn’t see myself with children but the miscarriage changed my way of thinking.

“After the miscarriage, I was convinced that there was something wrong with me.

“We had no plans to try again, we just said if it happens, then it happens.

“I found out I was pregnant again just after Christmas and, although I was happy, it was tough to deal with as I was convinced it was all going to happen again.”

Jodie was induced on her due date but didn’t have contractions for another two days

Jodie developed hypertension (high blood pressure) in the last six weeks of her pregnancy.

So she was induced and given an epidural at Pinderfields Hospital, Wakefield, on her due date – September 11.

It was agony. I was really struggling to breathe. I could feel them actually pulling my stomach apart as they were ripping the muscles

Jodie Marsden27

Two days later, she had still only dilated 6cm and was given a hormone drip to encourage her baby to arrive.

The contractions finally started but doctors grew concerned when Arthur’s blood pressure dropped dangerously low and rushed Jodie in for an emergency C-section.

Once in theatre, doctors upped the dose of Jodie’s epidural but, despite numerous checks to ensure she was numb, her pain relief stopped working half way through the op.

Jodie runs her own dog grooming business

Jodie said: “They did multiple checks to make sure I was numb, with an ice cold spray on several areas of my stomach followed by jabbing me with a needle. And all was fine, I was numb.

“For the incision, I just felt slight pressure, but then I felt them actually pulling my stomach apart as they were ripping the muscles. I was in so much pain.

They did multiple checks to make sure I was numb – and all was fine

Jodie Marsden27

“The anaesthetist was asking me if it was pain or pressure and I was saying pain, but Matt said it was like a whisper coming out of me.

“They could see I was uncomfortable, so they gave me more medication to try and get the pain under control. But I could still feel them inside my body.”

C-sections and pain: the facts

An epidural is a pain relief injection administered through the back.

After an epidural, you’re awake but the lower part of your body is numbed.

The numbness sound last for a few hours after a C-section.

During an emergency C-section, it’s not possible to administer a spinal block.

You shouldn’t feel pain but you may feel some tugging and pulling under epidural.

A C-section normally takes 40-50 minutes.

If you feel pain, the doctor or nurse can administer other medication such as an analgesia (morphine or diamorphine) through an IV drip.

This can take up to half an hour to take full effect.

C-sections are normally done while the mum’s awake but, in some cases, you may have to be put under general anaesthetic.

During the op, Jodie’s blood pressure rose dangerously high and she lost 2.5 pints of blood.

Doctors were forced to put her under general anaesthetic after she gave birth, fearing she might suffer a stroke or heart attack.

Jodie said: “When they finally pulled Arthur out, all I remember was hearing this little scream which suddenly stopped.

“I can’t remember seeing him and I turned to Matt and repeatedly asked him ‘Where is my baby?’

“Then it was like an out of body experience, I could hear things but it was like I was just watching from above.

Jodie has been recovering well at home since her traumatic birth

“I could hear them saying they needed to get the bleeding under control, and then the anaesthetist said ‘we’re going to have to send you to sleep’.

“They escorted Matt out and took Arthur to see him and my mum, but I had to stay in theatre for another hour and a half without holding my baby.

“Before the C-section, the anaesthetist told me that general anaesthetic is literally the last resort because it’s best for mums to have skin to skin contact straight away.

“But nothing was working for me so they had to do it.”

Pinderfields Hospital said…

When contacted, Pinderfields Hospital said they couldn’t comment on individual patient cases.

They provided clinical background information – which explained women are advised they will feel some pressure during the surgery.

Anaesthetists cannot administer a spinal block during a C-section but they can top up the epidural if needed – or administer an analgesia painkiller (such as morphine or diamorphine) through an IV drip.

If a woman is still in pain, the hospital says it will administer general anaesthetic.

But, if the uterus is already open and the cord exposed, the priority is to deliver the baby.

Where mums have a raised blood pressure, they would normally be monitored closely for at least 12 hours after the op.

Doctors were still concerned about Jodie and monitored her in recovery for 16 hours.

She finally got to hold her baby Arthur the next day – and has been healing well at home ever since.

Jodie said: “It definitely wasn’t what we expected – it’s not like you see on One Born Every Minute where they’re laid all calm and comfortable.

“It was like living in a nightmare, and I’m definitely not having any more children.

“I love Arthur and am enjoying being a mum, but there’s no way I’m going through that all ever again.”

In more childbirth news, this jaw-dropping footage shows a baby girl climbing out of her mum’s womb then falling asleep during a ‘natural’ C-section.


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