Monthly Archives: August 2007

More SPD surgery?

Hiya folks,

I’m actually looking for some advice from you guys as I’m in a bit of a dilema..

Basically, as most of you already know, I’ve suffered from both SPD and it’s big brother DSP for the past 7years now.  I had a plate put accross the symphsis back in 2003 and was then sent on my merry way.  Although I improved initially, gradually things declined back to the same as it was pre-op. After repeatedly complaining about the pain and only being able to get around with crutches and a wheelchair, I was referred to consultant after consultant and pain clinic after pain clinic.. all of whom said I was fine and insinuated (sp?) that it was all in my head..

Anyway, after battling on, I was finally referred to a pelvic specialist who’s said that the oriniginal plate wasn’t fitted correctly and 3 of the four screws attached are hanging out,hence the pain, instability and clicking.. (I’ve a good mind to phone all the people that doubted me and shove it up their ****).  At my last consultation, he has now said that the only thing he can now do is this:

Remove the original (and waste of space) plate.

File down both sides of the bone at either side of the symphsis to create ‘fresh bone’ (as the original screws weren’t fitted properly, they’ve gone right through the bone)

Take a chunk of bone from my hip to attach accross the newly filed bit

Then put two plates (one top and bottom) accross the joint to make it rigid…

Now, the dilema is that apparently the two plate option hasn’t been done before (because it fixes the too rigid) so they don’t know what effect it’ll have elsewhere.  They think it might start to affect my back pain more due to the additional stress put through the SI joints with the symphysis not having the natural flexibility.  If that does happen, they’ll then need to plate the SI joints as well, which may then put me in the wheelchair permenantly as my pelvis wouldn’t be able to move the way it should for walking etc..

What do I do?? I’m worried that if I go for it then I will end up in the chair permenantly and that’s all I seem to focus on just now.  I know he was just going over what ‘could’ happen but with my luck so far, then I really believe it’s a probability.  But then, what’s the option’s if I don’t? I live like this (or even worse) for the rest of my life?

I know it would be hard for anyone to advise, but please try as I don’t know what to do…


breastfeeding and mental health

I was reading a report earlier on this week and it was saying that children that have been breastfed are less likely to suffer from mental health issues such as depression.

So my question is were you breastfed?  If so have you suffered from depresion?  Did you breastfeed your children and if so have you noticed any signs of depression in them.

I wasn’t breastfed myself and have suffered episodes of depression in my life including pnd.  Out of my 3 children Ollie is a bit small to notice whether he will suffer but Hayley wasn’t breastfed and Fran was.  Hayley suffers from episodes of depression and unhappiness but Fran is very different person and doesn’t show any signs of depression and seems to sort her problems out a lot quicker.

VBAC question – anyone help?

A friend of mine is pg and due in early December. She had her 1st DD by emergency c-section as having got to 9cms with the head showing, the baby’s head was tilted back and was stuck.

Anyway, she went to the hospital this week to the VBAC clinic. The consultant told her that she has a 70% chance of a natural delivery etc however:

Trying to conceive

Trying to conceive.

Until we started to try our 1st baby, it had never occurred to me how much of a minefield trying to conceive can be. I naively assumed that you just had a lot of sex and at some point you would get pregnant. I didn’t actually know how my reproductive system worked or what actually happened in my cycle when I wasn’t having a period.

At school you’re told that most woman have 28 day cycles. This is the average length but of course we’re not all average. Most women actually have cycles ranging from 20 to 35 days and some even longer. Just because you’re cycle isn’t 28 days, it doesn’t mean that there is anything wrong with you – it’s just the way your body works.

The menstrual cycle is broken down into 3 phases:

Pre-Ovulatory Phase.

The cycle begins on the 1st day of bleeding (CD1). As the lining of the womb is shed, the pituitary gland in the brain starts to release a hormone called FSH – Follicle Stimulating Hormone which tells the ovaries to start maturing eggs ready for release, known as ovulation. The eggs whilst in their sacs are called follicles. Between 10 and 20 follicles will start to develop, but of these only 1 or 2 will mature fully. As the follicles develop and grow, they release oestrogen which in turn tells the lining of the womb to thicken up ready for a fertilised egg. This part of a woman’s cycle can last anywhere between 6 and 21 days.


As the follicles grow, the oestrogen continues to be released and when it reaches a certain level, the pituitary gland releases another hormone called LH – Lutenising Hormone. This LH surge causes the most mature follicle or follicles to release its egg. This is called ovulation. The egg makes it way through the fallopian tubes, hoping to meet sperm on its way. Sperm can live inside the woman’s body for up to 6 or 7 days, although 5 is the normal length of time. The egg however only survives for up to 24 hours. If it is not fertilised during this time, it dies. For this reason, the 5 days before ovulation and the day after or of ovulation are the most fertile days of the cycle.

Post Ovulatory or Luteal Phase.

After the egg has been released, the empty follicle produces progesterone which tells the womb lining to release fluid to nourish the approaching egg. If the egg has been fertilised, it will implant in the lining and the follicle will continue to release progesterone to nourish it. If fertilisation does not occur, the follicle with break down and stop producing progesterone and the womb lining will be shed, starting the next cycle. This phase can last between 10 and 16 days and is usually the same length for each cycle. The pre-ovulatory phase can however vary between 7 and 19 days. The egg can take 5 to 10 days to reach and then implant in the womb lining. If your luteal phase is less than 10 days, the progesterone will not be released for long enough to enable the egg to implant. This is called a Luteal Phase Defect which can be treated with progesterone supplements under your doctor’s care.

So, in the average 28 day cycle, there is only a window of up to 6 days where a woman can become pregnant with the most fertile time being the day before ovulation, and the day of ovulation itself. As this centres around ovulation, if you are having problems trying to conceive, it’s worth getting to know your cycle so that you can identify your most fertile days. There are a number of ways of doing this:

Ovulation Predictor Kits – OPKs. These are available from most chemists and supermarkets and look like pregnancy tests but work slightly differently. They work by detecting the LH surge that happens as the follicle is about to release the egg. This is detected in the urine and so you quite simply, wee on them! A positive (where the test line is the same colour or darker than the control line) OPK will usually indicate that ovulation will occur within 24-36 hours. If you don’t know when you ovulate, you may need to use these for several days before you get a positive result.

Basal Body Temperature charting (BBT). The Basal Body Temperature is basically the resting or base temperature. This is best taken when you wake up. When ovulation occurs, the BBT increases by at least 0.1 degrees Celsius, due to the production of progesterone. This method will only tell you when you have ovulated, i.e. after the event however; it is very useful for getting to know your cycles. To chart your BBT, you need a thermometer that measures up to 2 decimal places. Normal thermometers will not work as you will not see the temperature increase unless you can get readings down to a tenth of a degree – specific BBT thermometers are available to buy. Take your temperature as soon as you wake up. You must remain in bed as any kind of excess movement can increase the temperature. Record the reading on a chart – which again shows up to a tenth of a degree (there are free ones to download on the web). Plot your temperature each day on the graph and overtime, you will see that at some point, your BBT increases and stays raised. This is called a thermal shift, and occurs after ovulation. To see that you have ovulated, your BBT will be at least 0.1 degrees higher than the previous 3 days and remain at least 0.1 degrees higher for a further 3 days. It sounds very complicated, but it really isn’t when you get the hang of it. There are pieces of software available on the internet that chart for you (Ovusoft or Fertility Friends), or you can buy BBT diaries from places such as Boots. This can also help you to calculate your Luteal Phase.

Monitoring your Cervical Mucus. The consistency of cervical mucus changes throughout your cycle and by observing and monitoring these changes, it is possible to predict when ovulation will occur. During the fertile phase of your cycle, the mucus becomes more stretchy and pliable to help the sperm move freely through the cervix. To check your mucus, use a clean finger or toilet paper to examine your cervical fluid. As ovulation approaches the amount of mucus produces will increase and the consistency will be sticky. Directly prior to ovulation, it will increase in quantity greatly and will be semi transparent and slippery and will look a bit like raw egg white (EWCM). This indicates your most fertile time and ovulation will be imminent. Cervical position also changes during your cycle and you can check this. It is best to check it at the same time every day, after a shower in the morning is a good time. Insert a finger into your vagina and look for the end of your cervix. Prior to ovulation you may not be able to find the cervix as it moves high up into the cavity, softens and opens. After ovulation has occurred the cervix will drop, become firm and close. Just before menses the neck of the cervix will feel like the end of your nose with a dimple in it. Over time you will notice a pattern to your cervical movement but it can be quite subtle and take a while to get the hang of.

So, having established how long your cycles are, when you ovulate and how long your luteal phase is, what next? Well, the best time to have sex to conceive is during the 5 days before and day after ovulation. It is thought that sex on alternate days during this time is the best way to achieve a pregnancy. Medically, that’s fine but many couples can feel that this is pressured and so prefer to have sex every 3rd day up to ovulation. It is thought that sex after a break of say 2 weeks or so increases the quantity of the sperm. What is crucial is that you have sex around this time and unless you know your partner has a low sperm count the more times the better. If your partner has a low sperm count or after several months trying every day it might be better to go to every other day to allow the sperm to build back up.

Other tips for conceiving are:

Iron wont necessary help improve your chances of conception. But when you do become pregnant, it’s important that you don’t become iron deficient. Pregnancy causes increased iron needs because of your increased blood volume and the iron needs of your baby. An iron supplement is an easy way to ensure your body is ready when the time comes. Talk to your doctor to determine the appropriate dosage.

Your Parenting Tips

Please could everyone add their parenting tips here.

It may be to do with getting the housework done, getting a child to sleep, getting them to eat healthy foods, getting them to take medicine, settling them at nursery, preparing a child for the arrival of a sibling, preparing the house for a toddler, breastfeeding, or anything else you can think of.

Please feel free to add as many tips as you want.

Many thanks.

Smallprint Competition Winners Announced

A big thank you to all of you who entered the Smallprint Competition. The turn out was great!

I’m sorry for the delay in announcing the winners, but here they are:

The question was:

How much does one pendent on a chain cost?

And the answer was:


The winners, each winning a £40 gift voucher to spend with Smallprint are:




Congratulations! I shall be contacting you all shortly with details of your prize.

I hope you all enjoyed the competition, remember without sponsers like Smallprint they just wouldn’t be possible.

Keep your eyes peeled for the next competition, coming soon!

Do you parent differently in public?

I have a friend who has two very different parenting styles.  In private, as in front of close friends and family, she is very intolerant of her lo’s behaviour.  She just shouts at them to stop doing something instead of actually getting up and removing them from whatever it is they are doing.

She makes them eat food, when they are obviously either not hungry or full and is very expecting of them to behave all the time, they are the same age as my children 2 and 5.

In Public as in at school, shopping, days out etc, she is completely different.  She doesn’t ever shout at them, talks to them in a softer tone of voice if she gets them food whilst out they are never forced to eat it like at home.  She talks about them being angels when people comment about them and I’m stood there thinking OMG.

I have been noticing this more and more recently and it got  me thinking if other people parent their children differently in private and in public.

I dont, if my two are being naughty whilst we are out and about they get told off, I even once sat Louis on a chair in Mothercare and told him it was the naughty chair(he stayed there too). 

I think it gives out mixed messages and confuses them.  The amount of times I hear parents say to their kids ‘Just you wait until we get home’,  by that time they would have forgotten what they had done wrong.

Feeling pregnant

I was talking to a friend the other day and discussing our pregnancies. She said the one thing she remembers from first finding out she was pregnant was being asked ‘Do you feel pregnant?’ from her GP. We giggled over it because, never being pregnant before it seemed like a strange thing to ask.

Did anyone ‘feel’ pregnant before actually finding out they were? Obviously once you know you are pregnant then you look for movement and feelings, and they are there. With both my pregnancies I did not once feel like I was pregnant, and both times I discovered I was pregnant by accident.

The first time I had a lot of lower pain, and collapsed at work, thinking it was my apendix they doctors did a routine pregnancy test and discovered I was pregnant, and then changed the likely diagnosis to eptopic pregnancy, luckily it was neither those. The second time I went for an emergency scan and blood tests with regards to a medical condition I had and discovered I was 19 weeks pregnant lol

I think back and wonder if subconsciously I could have known I was pregnant but I really don’t think it had ever crossed my mind, until I knew I was then I felt all the normal pregnancy related feelings.

I know Jen knew from the minute Amiee (I think it was Amiee might be Katie) was conceived that she was pregnant, and as soon as her af was missing a test confirmed it.

Win gift vouchers with Smallprint!

Its competition time again!

Set up in October 2004, Smallprint creates beautiful jewellery that captures children’s fingerprints in silver.

The jewellery is made from a product called precious metalclay(PMC), which allows babies’ fingerprints to be taken on a piece ofjewellery and then fired in a kiln to form solid silver.

This month 3 lucky madmums will each win a £40 gift voucher to spend as they please with Smallprint.

So what do you have to do to win one of these fantastic prizes? Visit Smallprint by clicking here and answer this question.

How much does one pendant on a chain cost?

Once you have found the answer, send me a PM.

The rules!
One guess per member by PRIVATE MESSAGE ONLY! 
I will only accept your 1st answer – any subsequent answers will not count. 
DO NOT post your answer here. You may discuss the competition, but you MUST NOT put your answer here. 
The names of all the members who guess correctly will be put into the draw, and the winner drawn out at random. 
Deadline for entering is 7.30pm on Monday 6th August 2007 UK time. The winner will be announced on Wednesday 8th August.
Thecorrect answer has been verified in advance between Madzwalker, Smallprint and Flipflop. This competition is open to everyone exceptMadzwalker, Flipflop and employees of smallprint. Please see theMadmums Competitions Policy for further info (here)
Good luck everyone!