Graphic Birth Photo of Baby Born with a Nuchal Hand!

by Birth Without Fear on September 22, 2011

Babies really can birth vaginally so many ways…head down, breech, facing to the side, face presentation, anterior, posterior, and with a precious little hand by his/her face. :)

What’s absolutely brilliant about this, is Sarah birthed her son at home after a previous cesarean section after an OB told her that she would never carry a baby to term and she would never have a baby vaginally because her pelvis would not accommodate a baby’s head and shoulders. John was born vaginally with a nuchal hand weighing 9 lbs. 1 oz. on 4-13-11 at 42 weeks gestation!

home birth with nuchal hand

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{ 38 comments… read them below or add one }

Anna September 22, 2011 at 1:33 pm

My sister in law just had a compound presentation delivery, 8lbs 15 ozs, natural in a hospital. The midwife just let her do her thing and her and baby did beautifully!!

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Meredith Lovell September 22, 2011 at 1:40 pm

I assisted at a home birth in July where the hand came out on top of the head. Look like a chicken comb!

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Morgan Matthews September 22, 2011 at 1:43 pm

Both of my little babies (born 9 years apart) had nuchal hands. I didn’t really notice anything until I watched the video and saw them waving as they arrived : ) Babies really do come just how they need to.

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Sarah Lynn September 22, 2011 at 1:51 pm

Love it!
My son was born giving my midwife a high five as she put it. :-) I didn’t even know until after he was born that his little hand was above his head. I had a phenomenal (and fast) natural birth experience at the hospital and ended up with just a slight internal tear because of the compound presentation.
We’ll see if my next one keeps his arms and legs inside the ride until it comes to a complete stop. ;-)
So excited for my home birth in a few weeks!!

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AnnaC September 22, 2011 at 1:53 pm

My first baby came out exactly like that! I’ve got the picture to prove it(although DH would probably have a heart attack if I shared it on the interwebz…lol)! I didn’t know that was a big deal until now! She was 7lbs, 8 oz, and I only had a tiny tear. It did take 2 hours of pushing though!!!

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Wendy September 22, 2011 at 2:02 pm

This is AWESOME!!!!! love the pic, and love that momma did it! she birthed her baby!!!

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Kathryn Lindsey September 22, 2011 at 2:16 pm

My son was born with his hand up by his face (nuchal hand) as well. Sadly I don’t have any pictures till just after the birth when he was laid on my chest. Thank you for posting this and giving me a glimps of what his birth may have looked like. =)

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Angelena Donze September 22, 2011 at 2:34 pm

that is a beautiful picture, welcoming the site of a newborn baby earth bound is amazing! My first baby was almost 41 weeks shy by a day or so, both born by the blessed hands of wonderful midwives!

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Kim Henshaw September 22, 2011 at 2:51 pm

My first daughter was a tiny 6lber, perfect presentation, nothing abnormal, unmedicated hospital birth = 3rd degree tear. My second weighed 1/2lb more and was born with a nuchal hand at home with a midwife…not even a skid mark. The difference in care truly matters in unusual presentations (well, and even in normal ones!)

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BriW September 22, 2011 at 4:02 pm

My second was born with her hand clenched up by her cheek, and for several weeks after she would keep her hand there when she slept.

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Michelle May 23, 2013 at 11:47 am

My daughter (homebirth after 2 c/s) was born the same way, and would also sleep with her clenched hand against her cheek.

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Stephanie September 22, 2011 at 4:22 pm

Such a cute little smushed up face! :^)

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Mae Redmond September 22, 2011 at 6:04 pm

That. Is. AWESOME!!

It makes me cry. So much courage to birth in defiance of the “norms.”

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Emily Walton September 22, 2011 at 6:11 pm

That’s funny. My son was born vaginally with a nuchal hand weighing 9lb 3oz at 42 weeks. We had no problems with delivery. He just came bustin’ out like a super hero. :)

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Julie Cowles September 22, 2011 at 7:56 pm

On July 30th, 2011 I delivered my daughter. She was delivered also with a nuchal hand. She weighed 9 lbs 7 ounces and 21 1/2 inches long. She was born at a birthing center. I only had a 1st degree tear.

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Julia September 22, 2011 at 8:14 pm

omigoodness what a beautiful baby!!! love it!!

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Sara September 22, 2011 at 9:28 pm

This was a magnificent day. God truly showed himself to me in the birth of my sweet son. I did it! He’s perfect. What a gift! [The second set of hands are daddys'. He caught!]

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Kate September 23, 2011 at 5:01 am

This is definitely a beautiful picture – so amazing.
The only detraction for me is the gloved hand plunging into the mother, either applying traction to the shoulder or digging around for a nuchal cord. This intrusion can be painful for the mother and interfere with progress. And if they find a nuchal cord…?

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sv January 9, 2012 at 9:31 pm

I was thinking the same thing…this mama is already birthing a 9 lbs. 1 oz. baby with a nuchal hand at 42 weeks gestation and she has to fit a caregivers hand inside her too?

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Angie Stevens September 23, 2011 at 5:06 am

That’s a beautiful image. Wonderful that the Mam delivered vaginally too. My son came out like that, the Midwife called it the Superman pose. :) He was delivered standing up in my bedroom without any need of intervention. Not a single tear either. Just good guidance from an experienced midwifery team.

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Dana September 23, 2011 at 7:12 am

Congratulations! I also had a VBAC with a 9lb 3.5 oz baby with a nuchal hand (and a 14 inch head). It was empowering!

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Bethany September 24, 2011 at 5:50 pm

Beautiful & amazing. Our bodies can & will do amazing things.

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Lauren September 25, 2011 at 1:28 pm

Absolutely beautiful! I am convinced that doctors are women’s worst enemies when it comes to birthing. At least, when there are no MAJOR complications. I was told that I would have a hard time conceiving and carrying a baby to full-term, and THEN, I was considered high-risk. However, I got pregnant without “trying,” carried to 40 weeks/4 days, and had a completely natural water birth!

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rachel loth September 27, 2011 at 12:36 pm

Ive seen this happen without complication too. Hospital birth with a midwife, hands and knees, no tearing! It was awesome!

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Erin September 27, 2011 at 3:29 pm

My baby was born with a nuchal hand too. He was 9 lbs 9 oz and just as strong as can be. The fact that he powered through the birth canal fits his personality just right. My most vivid memory of the birth was when the doctor who had a strong South African accent said “that hand is going to rip this vagina to hell.” It wasn’t the most confidence building statement, but I had made it clear that I would rather tear than have an episiotomy and I did, 31 stitches!

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Lisa September 28, 2011 at 8:20 am

It’s not so much the hand, but that darn elbow that causes the tears. Good Job!

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elizabeth September 27, 2011 at 5:56 pm

this is absolutley beautiful! what a miracle giving birth is!!! <3

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Jennifer September 27, 2011 at 11:11 pm

This was exactly how my youngest daughter was born!! She has and will always be my, duhndunadun, super baby!!! I’ll have to share my homebirth video with you :)

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Jamie-Lea September 28, 2011 at 7:12 am

My son was born at home as well with a midwife present and with his hadn balled in a fist next to his eye. He gave him self a blood shot eye! LOL

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Lisa September 28, 2011 at 8:25 am

Beautiful Picture! My third born while on hands and knees. Her head and entire arm/shoulder was born at the same time. She was 8lbs. 7 oz. and I didn’t even tear! My hospital CNM, just kept everything together so nothing exploded out. She didn’t direct my pushing and she didn’t rush me. It’s all on video and it’s pretty awesome to watch even to this day, 13 years have passed.

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Lindsay September 30, 2011 at 3:51 pm

I saw this at a midwife assisted hospital birth over a year ago. The little elbow caused a severe INTERNAL tear. The outside of the vagina was fine. The inside needed some serious stitching. Eek.

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Jamie Lynn October 31, 2011 at 1:13 am

My first twin was born with her hand on her cheek. I never would have known had her daddy not been the one catching her, because so far he is the only person to see me give birth, plus she was only just over 4 lbs. :)

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Patricia March 8, 2012 at 4:17 pm

Cool picture! My third DS was born this way. I had no tearing thanks to a nurse using warm oils and counterpressure on my bottom and slow pushing! Prior to his birth, I told my husband I felt like something was scraping my cervix with fingernails. They all thought I was nuts!

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Amanda September 30, 2013 at 10:24 am

So funny. My daughter scraped my cervix too! Sometimes it made me jump out of my seat! She ended up being born with one arm all the way above her head and the other at her face. She crowned for 3 hours, but I didn’t tear. We had a successful waterbirth at home.

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Tabitha Wallen March 8, 2012 at 4:52 pm

My 8 year old son was born holding his umbilical cord clamped so tight that they lost his heart-rate and thought he had passed away. His fist was right against his chin, like ‘Thinker’ statute and anytime he sits or sleeps, is right there to this day!

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Cassie March 8, 2012 at 4:57 pm

Awe love this! Our little one was born with her hand beside her face, Midwife said i wouldn’t have torn a bit if she kept it in, but she was determined :-) I also said that i kept feeling like i had fingers tickling myinsides down there lol no one believed me! lol

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Kieren April 29, 2012 at 11:33 pm

I love this photo! I had a natural birth with a midwife and my daughter was born with a nuchal hand. I only had a slight internal tear and no other injuries. It gives me hope that next time the pushing stage might be easier!

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V.S. September 29, 2012 at 2:47 am

previous c-section, nuchal hand, 9 lb baby, that’s like the trifecta of horrors, guaranteeing a disaster for an OB. And it’s just another normal birth for a midwife. Amazing the difference in views, I’m so glad this mama got the right care for her & her beautiful baby!

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