Pregnancy
Maternity Care

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Epidural

Epidurals at Arrowhead Women’s Center

An epidural is a type of anesthesia in which a local anesthetic is injected near the spinal cord and nerve roots.  This anesthetic blocks pain sensations to entire regions of the body, and is typically used during childbirth to minimize the amount of pain that is experienced.

During consultations throughout the stages of your pregnancy with the Arrowhead Women’s Center team, we will be able to learn more about your own personal preferences with epidural injections.  Our team would like for you to be as comfortable as possible during labor, and we want for you to have the most accurate information so that you can make a decision about if an epidural is right for you.

Today, there is an abundance of misinformation about epidurals, and at Arrowhead Women’s Center, we want you to be well-informed about your choices.  Some facts about epidural anesthesia include:

  • Epidural anesthesia is considered to be one of the most effective and adjustable types of pain relief during childbirth.
  • A light epidural does not fully numb you below the waist, allowing for a woman to still move and push during contractions.
  • Fetal heart monitoring is used to monitor your baby during labor, and to ensure that everything is progressing appropriately.
  • A light epidural can reduce the risk of having a slow or stalled labor.  In addition, a light epidural may reduce the need of having an assisted delivery or cesarean delivery.

Administering an Epidural

During the injection of an epidural, a hallow needle and a small, flexible catheter are inserted into the space between the spinal column and epidural space in the middle or lower back.  The area that requires the insertion is first numbed with a local anesthetic.  The needle is then inserted and removed when the catheter has passed through, yet remains in place.

Anesthetic medicine is injected into the catheter to numb above and below the site of injection as necessary.  The catheter remains secured on the back to be used for more medicine administration if required.

Frequently Asked Questions about Epidurals

Many of our patients have questions about epidurals and pain management.  Some of the most frequently asked questions include:

  • Can I still feel contractions during labor if I have an epidural?
  • Can I keep my options open about choosing an epidural?
  • How do I create a birth plan to decide about my pain management choices?
  • What are the risks of choosing an epidural?
  • What are the risks of not choosing an epidural?
  • Is the health of my baby endangered in any way from choosing an epidural?

During a consultation with our Arrowhead Women’s Center team of physicians, we will answer all of your questions about epidurals and help you understand all of your options.  The health and wellness of both you and your baby is of the utmost importance to us, and we want you to feel secure and comfortable with every decision required during pregnancy.  Learn more about epidurals and Arrowhead Women’s Center today so that you can find out which decision may be best for you.

Learn More about Epidural Anesthesia

If you would like to find out more information about epidural anesthesia and the epidural process, please contact our Arrowhead Women’s Center team.  We will answer all of your questions about epidurals, and help you understand if an epidural could be the right choice for you during labor.

We understand that your choices during pregnancy are important, and our Arrowhead Women’s Center team is here with you through every step to allow you make the best decisions for your personal needs.  You do not have to walk through the epidural maze alone—let our qualified team of epidural experts help you.  Contact our Glendale, Arizona clinic today to learn more about Arrowhead Women’s Center.