Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Tuesday Thought

Two weeks ago, one of my aunts in Shanghai had an annual check-up. The results weren't too good, indicating that she had a malignant tumor in her liver. The whole family became cats on a hot tin roof.  She was immediately checked in at a hospital. By Friday of the same week, she had had surgery done already.  One week after that, she earned a 50cm long wound and a surprisingly cheerful result from biopsy clearly stating the tumor was nonmalignant liver nodules, which require no further treatment.

Now, apart from being happy for her, I can't say I appreciate how things are done in a haste over there. I'm sure there're a lot of similar cases. This is a liver surgery we are talking about after all. Shouldn't the doctor double or triple check before putting patients on the operation table? Would she have gotten other conservative treatment options if it was diagnosed benign at the first place? My aunt is doing very well otherwise and I wish her a speedy recovery.

This reminds me of the birth options I had 6 years ago when I was pregnant with C. I heard about everything I needed to know about episiotomy and it really scared me. Just the thought of it is still making me cringe, even to this day.  Somehow in comparison that cut through your abdomen and uterus didn't sound as painful (?).  In the end, I went for a natural birth, doing what I thought was best for the baby and me. My birth story was rather short. I went into labor late at night and by morning I was discharged already. That episiotomy didn't happen and I felt grand. I was a lucky one.

But still, is episotomy absolutely necessary? China has made it a standard procedure. The chances of getting one are close to 100%. If I had to give birth in China, I wouldn't've escaped from those surgical scissors. I fully understand under certain circumstances it is a must and can be life-saving. But I do feel most of the time it's only to make the doctors job easier but lengthen the recovery time for the patients.

I don't know. It's just my thought of the day. I could be wrong.

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