Finding an OB

Discussion in 'Pregnancy - First Trimester' started by A_Z, Nov 15, 2011.

  1. A_Z

    A_Z Well-Known Member

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    Hey all! Not actually pregnant yet, but I'm working on it. :)

    I'm wondering if any of you have advice on finding/choosing an OB. I'm in the US, not the UK, fwiw. I had a doctor I really liked until recently, when she left the practice. I'm in a big city, which complicates things. There are LOADS of doctors and many different hospitals at which I could deliver. Too many choices really.

    Any advice? I'm hoping that I'll be needing to do this soon.
     
  2. aliss

    aliss Well-Known Member

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    First I would decide whether or not you actual want an OB - if you have a non-complicated pregnancy then you could use a midwife and even plan a home birth if you wanted. Midwifery is really making a comeback (read Ina May's guide to childbirth for more).

    If you want an OB then I recommend one from a teaching hospital - they tend to be the most experienced, most up-to-date with their training, most on the ball with standards (you'll want to make sure it's a pro-breastfeeding hospital if you plan to BF, with clinics/lact. nurses easily available). Here's some more info from UNICEF https://www.unicef.org/programme/breastfeeding/baby.htm

    You may also be interested in a hospital with an attached birthing centre if you want a midwife but feel you should be in a hospital setting too.

    Most of all always choose one that you feel comfortable with. I have had 2 pregnancies, the first was perfect but my OBGYN was just randomly picked from a phone book. He never cared much about anything and I was just a number. My 2nd pregnancy was very complicated and ended in a loss but she was an excellent doctor (directer of obstetrics at the 2nd top university here in Canada) and is still working with me to ensure everything is going well after.

    Good luck with TTC :)
     
  3. shortymama

    shortymama expecting our 2nd!

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    Ask your friends and co-workers, that's how I got my recommendation and I *love* my OB!
     
  4. pithikaki

    pithikaki Baby No. 1 is on the way!

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    Not sure what city you're in, but maybe my experience can help. I'm originally from NYC, but now living in the outside burbs, I've still got the overwhelming options.

    Before I got pregnant I found what I thought was a great place. AFTER i got pregnant - the place was my worst nightmare. I'm not saying every place is like this, but a lot of places handle different types of patients differently. I was sure I would want an OB, because why not, until I realized how medically "mechanical" the practices around me were.

    I weighed my options and being too scared for a homebirth and having some (not high risk) minor concerns, like asthma and thyroid disease, I wanted to be sure I could get care (and pain meds :D) if I needed it.

    For me, I was able to find a hospital employed midwifery practice that works under the supervision of the OBGYNs also on staff. Don't be afraid to figure out what you want and then look for it instead of seeing what's available and then picking the closest thing to what you want.

    If you're not completely against midwives, but you're sure you want a hospital birth, then start by looking up stats. Check the C-section rates, forceps delivery, vacuum delivery - everything. If there is anything that is really wacky, cross it off the list!

    In my opinion, start with the hospital first (assuming you want that, again!) THEN find a doctor. You are probably not going to find an OBGYN practice in todays modern world where your doctor will work solo and be your deliverer - he/she will likely have lots of colleagues. The hospital staff will be in there too, taking care of you before your doctor is called and after he's finished, so remember that. Good docs practice in good hospitals, so you'll narrow down the weenies once you find the place that works for you :D GL!
     
  5. gk1701

    gk1701 Well-Known Member

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    Agreed- I started with the stats- which hospitals had high c-sec rates and which hospital was most likley to allow me to do an as natural as possible delivery. Turns out the hospital where my regular gyn got decent review so I'm staying with her. Also, there is a good chance your doctor won't be available when you deliver. In my practice there are 5 doctors and I will meet with each of them once while being primarily managed by my doctor- that way I won't be meeting someone for the first time when I'm ready to push. I'm in Atlanta.
     
  6. A_Z

    A_Z Well-Known Member

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    Thanks so much everyone! All your responses were very helpful. I had been wondering if it made sense for me to start with the hospital instead of the practice/doctor, which is what you all say to do.

    pithikaki, I'm in NYC, so your answer is exactly on target. The hospital closest to me does have a fairly high section rate, but it also handles a significantly sicker population than most others in the city. So I don't know if that means that the section rate is purely a result of the sicker patients, or if even healthy patients would expect higher intervention rates.

    I know that I want to deliver in a fully-equipped hospital that allows for low-intervention births, so I guess I'll start looking for that.

    Thanks again!
     
  7. aliss

    aliss Well-Known Member

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    Then you would be best off looking for a hospital that offers an attached birthing centre (usually the women's hospital)!
     
  8. pithikaki

    pithikaki Baby No. 1 is on the way!

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    Also, don't worry about finding one really "close". Obviously, you don't want to make a ridiculous drive, but remember that if you're not high risk, it's not really advisable to RUN to the hospital once you feel you're going into labor! You will be there SO long anyway, and if you want less "intervention" and you're worried about doctors/nurses/staff/etc. becoming impatient, you'll want to get there soon enough so they can help you but late enough so that you don't get thrown in a bed and have to wait hours for anything to happen.

    SO, in short, if you find a great place and it's a 30min drive vs a 5 min walk, it's OK! I'm in Huntington (LI) now and I'm close enough to Nassau County that those hospitals were choices for me, as well as the ones western on the island at the end of Suffolk County. Huntington Hospital is 15 minutes away, but Stonybrook has what I really wanted even though it's probably the farthest from me. Look at EVERY hospital within reason so you don't accidentally omit one that seems too far - if it's a perfect fit for you, imo it's worthwhile!

    For a laugh, when my mom had my brother, she lived on Staten Island, and she had previously lived in Brooklyn. When she went into labor, she drove herself across the bridge to birth at Victory, because she felt more comfortable there! :haha:
     

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