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OB/GYN Recommendations - VBAC Specialty, NE

When I went through my first pregnancy, I loved Dr. Adams (Joe affectionately called her Patch in our off-line conversation), my OB/GYN.  I didn't realize how important it was to have a caring doctor that you could easily confide in and who wouldn't judge your decisions.  She was a good match.  With my second pregnancy, we had switched plans and doctors.  The experience was more impersonal.  But the fact that I had a normal pregnancy previously and encountered no issues during the second, it didn't seem to matter as much.  Whether you're new mama-to-be or new to town, it's good to get recommendations from other moms since real experiences matter!

Here's a question.  A reader is at the early stages of pregnancy and is looking for a good OB/GYN who is able to perform or advise on VBACs and is easy to talk to.  Gender does not matter.  Preference for location is in the NE.  Would you recommend your OB/GYN, or do you have any recommendations?


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Karen Sweigert at Cascade Women's Health in the Good Sam Buildings in NW is a dream doctor. I don't know about VBACs, but Karen is kind, considerate, easy to talk to, and has given both me and my partner a lot of good, objective advice. I recommend her whole-heartedly.

Not in the NE, but my friend had a VBAC with the nurse midwifery group at OHSU. we moved here when i was about 20 weeks along in this pregnancy, and i've been seeing Sally Hersh, CNM, there at her recommendation (not for a VBAC though) and am very comfortable with her, and the group as a whole. she spends a lot of time with me, answering questions and just chatting. can't vouch for the birth experience personally yet, but i can update in 4-6 weeks (already? yipes!!)

oh, and we had our OHSU birth center tour last night and i was impressed. seems like a lot of things i had to request specifically in my birth plan in kansas city are par for course at OHSU which is nice.

I had a really hard time 2 1/2 years ago finding a doc that was willing, let alone enthusiastic, about doing a VBAC. I don't mean to sound discouraging, as the tide hopefully has turned since then, but I just wanted to let you know my experience.

I was really hoping for a VBAC, but ended up having a 2nd c-section. Luckilly, it turned out well.

I'm happy to chat via email if you want to ask more specific questions.

I too wanted to find a practice that would keep VBAC an option, and that's how I ended up at the fantastic Everywoman's Health clinic, located within Legacy Emanuel. Emanuel is one of the only hospitals (along with OHSU) in the Portland area that is approved by the state to 'offer' VBACs. (I can't remember exactly, but the hospital has to have a surgeon at the hospital 24/7 in case of emergency; a neonatal clinic; etc to qualify.) All of the doctors (all women) at Everywoman's Health (501 N Graham St, Ste 445, Portland,(503)284-5220) can deliver @ Emanuel. I was with Dr. Liz Newhall, who is (as all the docs are there) extremely pro-VBAC. She's been there forever and is extremely well-respected. Unfortunately, that also makes her very busy, and my visits were often very rushed feeling. However, if I wanted to really talk about something, she'd definitely sit down with me. And, most importantly, when it came time for the birth, she was comfortable letting me push for 2 hours (other docs not as comfortable with VBAC probably wouldn't have) and I did indeed have my son vaginally! (Hooray!) I have friends who see Dr. Sally Holtzman @ Everywoman's Health and really love her.

Finally, a plug for Laurel Lee, who is the clinic's nurse practioner and *amazing*. I saw her instead of Dr. Newhall for several appts, and she was a wealth of information on VBAC (a special interest of hers).(She's also a midwife.) She had all the time in the world for me, and really gave me confidence in achieving VBAC (as did Newhall).

Feel free to email me if you have any other questions, and best of luck! It's definitely worth it to try for the VBAC!



While I can't vouch for her VBAC insights, I highly recommend my OB/GYN, Dr. Nancy Grant at Women's Health Today. She's super smart, warm and personable and takes the time to answer every little question. I already had the utmost confidence in her when we got pregnant. Then I found out that a pregnant woman at my church, who is an OB/GYN herself, spent 12 weeks researching doctors and getting recommendations from other doctors. She ended choosing Dr. Grant to deliver her baby. If anyone knows about VBACs, it's probably her. Good luck.

I went to see Dr. Grant, who was also highly recommended to me, and the very first thing she said to me upon seeing that I had a c-section for my first is "You should know that you can't have a VBAC with me" (due to having to deliver @ Providence). I was bummed, because she's supposed to be great!

I can also recommend Every Women's Health Clinic. I saw Dr. Sally Holtzman for my daughter's birth three years ago. She was very supportive of my decision to have a natural birth (I ended up with a c-section). But I know they support VBAC since they told me I would be a good candidate for one if I were to have another child. All the dr's there are wonderful and Laurel Lee the midwife is also great.

The only hospital really equipped to support a woman having a VBAC on the Eastside is Emanuel. Part of the reason Nancy Grant and other doctors at Providence and Adventist have difficulty enabling their patients to have a VBAC is because the doctor/surgeon needs to be in house your whole labor, an anesthestist ready, and the operating room ready, such that if the need came up, you could be back having a repeat cesarean in an emergency and the baby born within 20 minutes (or less). Nancy and many of the other doctors I know would LOVE to support more women having VBACs-encourage your hospitals to support this in any way you are able.
Meanwhile, Liz Newhall is great, and I agree her group is committed to helping women have a VBAC who want one.

Anyone know of any doctors who are willing to do a VBAC after 2 c sections. I have been trying to find one and would love any insights you may have. Thanks.

Anyone know of any clinics or doctors located in or around the Emanuel hospital apart from Every Women's that are supportive of VBAC's?


I'm the founder of Mother Tree Doula Services and we specialize in VBAC support and founded the International Cesarean Awareness Network (ICAN) of Portland.

For future reference we've had several successful VBACs with the following providers.
-Dr. Joe Wieks at Legacy Emanual Hospital (VBAC2)
-Legacy Emanual Midwives
-OHSU Midwives
-Every Woman's Healthcare

Homebirth/Birth Center
-Alma Birth Center
-Andaluz Waterbirth Center
-Bellyfruit Midwifery
-Right at Home Midwifery

I also highly recommend getting connected with the local ICAN Group: ICAN of Portland Meets 3rd Mon. 7 pm; 503-245-1678

Here's wishing you the very best birth!

Jesse Henderson, LCCE, CD

I am 27 weeks pregnant with my 2nd child and will be relocating to Portland late July... just before my due date of August 31st. I am looking for a VBAC friendly OBGYN or Midwife. I think I will live somewhere near Emmanual or Good Samaritan. Any thoughts/advice on either hospital is also helpful. I am feeling overwhelmed, lost and have no idea where to begin. Any advice is much appreciated!

I had a VBAC 12 weeks ago at Good Samaritan Hospital in NW Portland. My doctor was Dr. Michael Davis of the NW Women's Clinic. He was very supportive of my desire to attempt a VBAC, but also not so into it that he would ever have hesitated to do a repeat section if it looked like we were in any danger.

I was induced with pitocin which some doctor's won't allow with a VBAC, and later on when I wasn't dilating, they inserted an internal uterine contraction monitor to see how effective my contractions were as an extra precaution.

I will say that Dr. Davis did mention that the reason a lot of Docs are hesitant to offer VBAC as an option is that it's much more work for them. He had to be on the premises of the hospital (or in his case, 5 min away in his office, which is on the hospital campus) at all times while I was in labor. So, it's much more time consuming for them than the average woman's birth. He also did not have kids yet at the time I delivered, but now does. So, I think sometimes doctor's with families don't want to commit to a 24 hour labor with a VBAC mom.

Definitely give him a call and see if he will support your wishes! And good luck!

I want to thank all who have posted information about VBAC supportive doctors and midwives. I have found this info. extremely encouraging. I have not found a doctor in Waterville who will agree to support a VBAC after 2 c-sections. My next step was to check out Portland or else a homebirth in waterville. since Maine General is equipped to deal with VBAC emergencies. My question is does anyone knows of midwives in the Waterville area who would support a homebirth of a VBAC2 candidate? Thank you so much! Much blesings to you all!
Sincerely, Tara

this woman does chemical abortions and posts papers on them

what is wrong with you? is she pro-woman when she's murdering children and harming women for the future?

what is wrong with you? the only thing she is is pro-planned parenthood and that industry



I had an emergency c-section with my first giant baby, and had to seriously look around for a doctor willing to do a vbac for my second baby- I also had Providence insurance which limited some of my choices. Dr. Brendan Carrol works at a women's clinic in Adventist Hospital (with two other great doctors) and was willing to do a vbac for me at Adventist. Providence and Adventist were willing to work together to cover the out of hospital change so it would all be covered (i think Providence would pay 80% or something and adventist was possibly willing to waive the other 20%).
Dr. Carroll is really laid back, funny, informative, and supportive. He always takes as much as time as you need and gives you the facts/statistics then can break it down for you to real life info. His wife had a c-section, then two vbacs after that, so he is very supportive of vbacs. the office staff is super nice too and the advice nurse always got back to me really quickly. I remember how hard it was to find a doctor who'd help me, and so I just want to share the info with anyone that needs it, or anyone looking for a great doctor/clinic.

Has anybody used Rebecca Parker (nurse practitioner, nutritionist, certified midwife) in the Portland Oregon area?
I am considering using her for my homebirth, but I am interested in hearing other women's experiences?

Dr. Nancy Grant delivered my son via c-section and told me before performing the c-section that I would never be able to have a child vaginally because of the c-section. I had the surgery after going into labor spontaneously at 38 weeks, completing dilation, and pushing for a few hours.... the night before Thanksgiving. I don't trust that my c-section was necessary and it was more failure to wait, not to mention I was refused food and never offered a drink by the nursing staff at Providence. They also told me that I was not *allowed* to push any longer without an epidural. I didn't know about informed consent and my right to refuse the epidural. They told me it was hospital policy.

I think Dr. Grant is a great medical doctor for medical situations and emergencies, but I think her suggestion and sense of urgency regarding a c-section was much too zealous. She really did not give me any choices, simply waiting was not on the table at all. My baby was not in distress, I was not yet tired.

Hopefully you ladies in Urban Mamas land are more informed than I was, but really make sure you know your rights before giving birth at Providence and with Dr. Grant.

I'm pregnant again and going to try for a VBAC with the Emanuel Midwifery Clinic, which is awesome so far!

Dr. Meike Lane delivered my 2nd VBAC! She was AWESOME!!!!!

Has anyone used Rebecca Parker for homebirth? No one seemed to answer Sue's question from September 2011, and now I am in the same place as her. Would love some insight and help regarding her.

Would welcome any input on the OHSU midwifes. Am considering going to them for a VBAC birth (first birth emergency c-section, no labor, placental abruption). Curious to hear from any other women who used them with VBAC good or bad . . .

Thanks for sharing your experiences!

I would not use Rebecca Parker? There are to many reasons to list.

Just another experience, I had a C-section with Dr. Grant in 2012 and she told me I would be a great candidate for a VBAC. I'm not sure what Marissa's situation was, but I too went through all of the labor and pushing and it turned out the cord was too short. If Dr. Grant said a VBAC wouldn't be possible, it may have been related to the specifics of your situation.

To clarify, she said I'd be a great candidate for a VBAC next time around.

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