This blog post is sponsored by Pacira BioSciences Inc., but all thoughts and opinions are my own.
As many of you may know by now, we are expecting baby #3! You would think I feel like quite the champion when it comes to this pregnancy thing, but truth is, each time I feel like I am going through it for the first time. As I sit here reflecting on my birth stories for Madison Kate and Olivia Grace, I realize that they were so similar, yet so different.
For both my daughters, my pregnancies were smooth in the beginning. Sure, I suffered with extreme bouts of nausea and vomiting, but for the most part – I had no issues until the very end. For both pregnancies, during my final trimester, my blood pressure became elevated. I was afraid I would face the dreaded pre-eclampsia, but luckily my doctor was able to keep things under control and I was able to deliver two healthy, beautiful baby girls vaginally.
For both my girls, I had worked with my husband and my OB early on to develop a birth plan. I had planned for vaginal deliveries. I did however, have to have back up plans just in case my blood pressure elevated out of control and an emergency C-section was warranted. Fortunately, I was able to see my original birth plan through for both deliveries. However, I know every pregnancy and delivery is different. As I plan to deliver our newest addition in May, I will have two birth plans – one for a vaginal delivery, and another one for a C-section if needed.
As I make my birth plan, one of the most important things that I consider is – recovery time. As a mom to a newborn (and multiple children back home), we want nothing more than to be present from the moment we first meet our sweet babies, so choosing a birth plan that will allow for just that is important. While I feel like I’ve got the vaginal delivery birth plan down pat, one thing that I struggle with is the idea of how I will handle the pain post-surgery if I had to have a C-section.
Did you know that almost 1.3 million women deliver babies via C-section each year, making it one of the most common surgeries performed in the United States? Also, more than half of patients who have a C-section are prescribed an opioid. Like many moms, this is a concern for me. The side effects that are accompanied with taking an opioid aren’t exactly desirable for a new mom, or any mom for that matter. Thankfully, I’ve learned about EXPAREL® (bupivacaine liposome injectable suspension). It is a long-acting numbing medication that provides pain relief for the first few days after surgery, when pain is usually the worst. EXPAREL is injected into the surgical site by your doctor and works by numbing the area where surgery was performed, unlike opioids, which affect your whole body. Clinical trials showed that women who received EXPAREL to manage pain for their C-section used less opioids after surgery, had less pain, and went home sooner.
As I continue through my 3rd pregnancy journey, I am feeling more prepared than ever. To all my fellow mommies to be, do yourself and your little one a favor and do your research while creating your birth plan. I encourage all expecting mothers to be advocates for their own health and speak to their doctors about non-opioid options like EXPAREL to manage pain, specifically if a C-section is in your birth plan, or even to plan for the unexpected. Pregnancy is such a beautiful journey, and delivery is even more beautiful. Here’s to a safe delivery with a fast recovery, and a lifetime of happiness with your newest addition.
As always, thanks so much for reading. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to email me or DM me!
EXPAREL is indicated for single-dose infiltration in adults to produce postsurgical local analgesia and as an interscalene brachial plexus nerve block to produce postsurgical regional analgesia. Safety and efficacy have not been established in other nerve blocks.
Important Safety Information
● EXPAREL should not be used in obstetrical paracervical block anesthesia.
● In studies where EXPAREL was injected into the wound, the most common side effects were nausea, constipation, and vomiting.
● In studies where EXPAREL was injected near a nerve, the most common side effects were nausea, fever, and constipation.
● EXPAREL is not recommended to be used in patients younger than 18 years old or in pregnant women.
● Tell your healthcare provider if you have liver disease, since this may affect how the active ingredient (bupivacaine) in EXPAREL is eliminated from your body.
● EXPAREL should not be injected into the spine, joints, or veins.
● The active ingredient in EXPAREL:
○ Can affect your nervous system and your cardiovascular system
○ May cause an allergic reaction
○ May cause damage if injected into your joints
○ Can cause a rare blood disorder
For more information, please visit https://www.exparel.com/patient/index