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AMC introduces patient-controlled epidural for expecting moms

March 29, 2012
Adirondack Daily Enterprise

SARANAC LAKE - Expecting moms now have the choice of a patient controlled epidural while delivering their newborn at Adirondack Medical Center, a member of Adirondack Health.

AMC is the only provider of this service in the Adirondack region, and places the mother in control of this labor pain relief method.

"Our goal is to make the birth of your baby as safe, pleasant and memorable as possible," said Marilyn Leitsch, director of the Stafford New Life Center at AMC.

Article Photos

Jennifer and Dustin Fuller spend time getting to know their daughter, Isabella, following her birth at Adirondack Medical Center on March 9.
(Photo courtesy of AMC)

There are a range of options for pain relief during labor depending on the expecting mother's wishes. They include breathing and relaxation techniques taught in childbirth classes at AMC, laboring in the Jacuzzi tubs in the delivery rooms or the administration of an intravenous pain medication.

For some women, there is desire for additional assistance during labor, which is provided in the form of regional pain management.

The Patient Controlled Epidural Anesthesia, or PCEA, provides regional pain relief, but has the added advantage of the patient controlling the dosing of the medication. Other key points of the PCEA include:

There is a push button for the patient to administer the medication at a prescribed rate and amount.

This prevents the patient from taking too much medication.

Both the mother and baby are monitored frequently by a nurse.

Recent studies show less medication is used when the patient has control compared to traditional epidurals.

Less medication can result in a shorter recovery time.

Jennifer and Dustin Fuller, of Bloomingdale, recently welcomed their first child, Isabella, who came into the world on March 9, weighing six pounds, 14 ounces. Jennifer had an epidural provided by an anesthesiologist and was pleased with the outcome. Her husband Dustin agrees.

"Everybody is so passionate about what they do," he said. "We wouldn't go anywhere else."



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