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ECV Clinic

If your baby is presenting bottom or feet (breech) rather than head first your midwife or doctor may suggest booking for an ECV.

ECV stands for external cephalic version. This is the name of the technique aiming to turn your baby to a head-first position.

What is breech?

Breech means that your baby is lying bottom first or feet first in the womb (uterus) instead of the usual head first position. Breech presentation is common in early pregnancy but, as the pregnancy advances a baby usually turns naturally into the head first position. Only 3% (3 in every 100) of babies are breech at the end of pregnancy. A breech baby may be lying in one of the following positions.

Breech

My baby is breech, what next?

  1. If your baby is believed to be breech, you will be offered a scan to confim the presentation of your baby.
  2. Within the next few days you will be asked to book:
    • A detailed scan, which will give more infomation on the exact presentation of your baby, its growth and the quantity of amniotic fluid.
    • An appointment with the ECV clinic.
      This clinic is led by one of our obstetricians and a midwife in Oak Room, in the maternity unit.
      To book, call Lisa, our administrator on 0802 934 3117 between 08:00 and 14:00

What happens the day of your appointment:

After meeting the members of the team, you will be given time to ask any questions and discuss any concerns. You will have a scan to confirm that your baby is still breech and then your baby will be monitored. Once we are happy with your baby's welbeing you will be given medication which will relax your uterus to improve the chances of turning your baby. The obstetrician will then apply gentle but firm pressure on your abdomen to help your baby turn. Your baby's position and heart rate will then be monitored after the procedure.

If your baby remains breech, we will make recommendations and discuss your options. We will support your informed choice of a vaginal birth or an elective caesarean section.

This appointment may take a couple of hours.

 

More information:

 

 

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