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3rd Degree Tear Healing

3rd Degree Tear Healing

It is not possible to say how long it will take to recover after a 3rd degree tear, as everyone heals at a different rate.

If you are not healing well, or you develop additional health complications, you need to speak to your midwife or GP.

3rd degree tear healing

There are certain things you can do after a 3rd degree tear to aid the healing process. You should be advised of these before you leaving hospital. They include:

  • Keeping the area clean, having a shower or bath once a day
  • Change your sanitary pad regularly
  • Washing your hands regularly to remain free from infection
  • Drinking lots of water
  • Eating a balanced diet
  • Doing pelvic floor exercises

Some women may also want to alleviate the pain and swelling by applying ice packs, taking anti-inflammatories and lying down regularly.

With these steps, most women will make a full recovery after a 3rd degree tear. It can take several months to completely heal, although everyone will recover at their own rate.

Is my 3rd degree tear healing normally?

A common question after a 3rd degree tear is: “am I healing normally?” It is a difficult question to answer because there is no set recovery period and some will take longer than others.

To ensure that all is healing well, it is important to attend your check-up appointments. Anything 'abnormal' should be detected during this time.

If you develop concerns after your six-week check-up, you should make another appointment with your GP. It is vital you do this sooner rather than later, because if there is something wrong, it is best treated at the earliest available opportunity.

Common causes of concern include:

  • Painful, smelly stitches – indicating an infection
  • Faecal urgency or incontinence
  • Faeces coming through the vagina – indicating a fistula
  • Constipation
  • Persistent pain
  • You remain anxious about having sexual intercourse

3rd degree tear complications

Your GP can check to see if there are any obvious issues at play, such as an infection. If the problem is not immediately apparent, you can be referred to a specialist – such as a gynaecologist or colo-rectal surgeon. This will enable you to find out whether you are suffering any additional complications.

If you are subsequently diagnosed with complications that should have been avoided, there could be a case of medical negligence. This typically happens with women whose tear has been negligently repaired due to surgical error, or due to a misdiagnosis.

If your 3rd degree tear has not healed because of medical mistakes, please get in touch with us to discuss taking legal action.

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