Friday, October 7, 2011

Special Scars, Special Women

If you have read my blog for a while, you probably know that my first c-section resulted in a "special scar", an inverted T incision.  I wanted to take a moment and explain what a special scar is, and talk about an incredible organization in its infancy that has formed to support women who have them, educate them on their options, and to spread awareness.

A special scar is any unusual internal incision, other than the standard and common low transverse incision. I personally have an inverted T, which basically looks like an upside down T on my uterus. (My external incision is low and horizontal.)  Sometimes the OB cuts them that way, and sometimes the uterus tears while the incision is being spread and stretched to deliver the baby.  Sometimes they are necessary because of a malpositioned baby (like breech or transverse) and sometimes they are used because of microprematurity.  Click here for a great article explaining different types and how they affect the birthing woman.

Now onto something that makes my heart smile. :) When I was pregnant with my VBAC baby, I came across an amazing source of support by the way of Jessica Tiderman's Life after Inverted T yahoo support group.  Before then, I had never met anyone who had an incision like mine, and even farther from my mind was the prospect of meeting someone who had VBAC'd after one.  It was an extra boost of confidence I needed to propel me toward my own VBAC!  Eventually this group became Special Women, Special Scars, and earlier this year, Jessica formed a non-profit organization in an effort to support, educate, and spread awareness.  I consider it an honor to sit on this board as membership director and help assimilate moms into the support group and help meet their needs. Jessica is one day soon hoping to do some medical studies on the risks involved with special scars, as the studies that exist are small and lacking, although hopeful.

The website is a link to information and support.  There are articles, links to relevant studies, birth stories from some of our members, and links to our support groups for those who need them.  Oh, and the ever-important survey, in an effort to begin to collect information for future studies to be done.  If you know someone who has a special scar, whether they VBAC'd on it or not, we want to hear about it! 

This is important work that helps moms all over the world like me, so spread the word!  And if you can, please donate something to the cause! :-)

Scars remind us where we've been. They don't have to dictate where we're going. It's a shallow life that doesn't give a person a few scars. ~ Garrison Keillor

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