Rates are rising worldwide. That’s a problem. But don’t forget: This surgery also saves lives.
Consumer Reports finds that your odds of having a c-section can be over nine times higher if you pick the wrong hospital.
The Lancet reports show that access to C-sections remains a challenge in many low-income countries, particularly for poor women. This is especially true in sub-Saharan Africa. This means that poorer women – and their babies – are at a higher risk of dying during childbirth if there are complications.
f you want to avoid an unnecessary C-section, you should seek out a hospital known for spare use of the procedure. Because, you see, the rate of C-sections varies dramatically across hospitals. Some hospitals perform C-sections in 15 or 20% of deliveries, while others perform them the majority of the time.
One of the most debated aspects of inductions: whether they increase the risk of caesarean deliveries, or C-sections. Most studies have contradicted one another and been generally inconclusive. A study published this week in the New England Journal on Medicine may have brought much needed clarity to the field.
The C-section rate has almost doubled in less than a generation.
Even though a C-section can be a life-saving procedure for both mother and baby, it does come with risks and can lead to complications, particularly when it comes to future births. In at least five countries, over half of all births are delivered by C-section.
"An Unnecessary Cut?" follows Dr. Chileshe Nkonde-Price, a cardiologist and mother of a toddler, who aims to have a vaginal birth for her second child after delivering her first through C-section. Nkonde-Price's efforts to have a VBAC (Vaginal Birth After Caesarean) and the reasons behind the rise in C-sections are the main subjects of the 17-minute film, which also features interviews with medical professionals and a whole lot of startling statistics about the United States birthing system.
After having a caesarean section, why few women have a subsequent vaginal birth.
For many women, birth either involves an actual human getting pushed out of your vagina, or an actual human getting pulled from your womb through an honest-to-goodness operation. That you are most likely awake for.
I figured, by comparison to pushing a baby out and getting ripped from the rooter to the tooter, a c-section would be a cake walk.
At best, an excess of C-sections is a waste: as a surgical procedure (the most common in America), it requires more resources and costs more than a natural delivery, leading to annual losses of about $5 billion in the US.
Worse, unnecessary C-sections increase the health risks of having a baby. Hemorrhage, cardiac arrest, and major infection occur three times more often in women who have surgical deliveries. And after a woman has had a C-section, her following deliveries tend to occur in the same way, accentuating the risk of placenta accreta (table 1), a potentially fatal condition which occurs when the placenta grows too deeply into the uterine wall, because of excess scar tissue in the uterus.
There are wide variations in Caesarean section rates across Europe, indicating a lack of consensus about the best way of delivering babies, a study suggests.
The percentage of babies delivered by cesarean section in the United States has increased dramatically over the past several decades, but that trend is now reversing, according to a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Studies have found that babies born by elective c-section before 39 weeks are more likely to have breathing problems than babies who are delivered vaginally or by emergency c-section.
Women should formally have the right to choose to give birth by caesarean section – but they must also be offered counselling to help them make their decision, the National Institute for Clinical Excellence has decided. But what are the risks?
Will new guidelines, giving women the choice to have a C-section over natural should they want one, present expectant mothers (particularly of first children) with an agonising dilemma?
Here are five things you need to be aware about before undergoing a C-section...
It's time for us to dispense with the battle lines that have marked conversations about birth for decades -- and that have led us to neglect the important task of finding and facilitating the good in cesareans and other births where technology is desired or needed.
If you’re a mom-to-be with your heart set on a natural delivery, the news that your baby needs (or may need) to be delivered by cesarean section can be incredibly disappointing.
So: Cesarean sections are good, and cesarean sections are bad. But how do you determine if a cesarean section is good for you?
C-sections remained extremely rare throughout the 19th century. Even after the mid-20th-century advent of antibiotics and blood transfusions, which rendered the surgery much safer, the national rate of C-sections remained low. Then, the procedure exploded.
Guest blogger Barrie Hardymon, an editor for NPR's Talk of the Nation, sent us a note arguing that the Baby Project has placed too much emphasis on birth stories that are natural, or planned to be natural. "Birth has become so politicized," she wrote, "that it's not OK to even intimate that you had a scheduled C-section." She wanted the NPR project to reflect a variety of experiences, and so offered us hers — the guilt-free C-section.
I knew that I would, in all likelihood, be having this baby via c-section quite early in my pregnancy. By 30 weeks he was still breech and happy about it.
It was around that time that I started talking to my friends who have had c-sections about their experiences. I wanted to know how it went for them, whether it was smooth or tough. I felt like I could “prepare” by knowing all kinds of things that could happen instead of going into it blind.
So, I want to share a little bit more about my experience simply as a friend.
After photographer Christian Berthelot‘s son was born through a caesarian section procedure, an obstetrician at the hospital asked Berthelot if he wanted to shoot a series of photos showing her work in the operating room — a strange and graphic view that most people never see. Berthelot immediately agreed.
While C-sections are often the best approach to ensuring good outcomes for both mother and baby in high-risk pregnancies or complicated deliveries, rates are rising among women with low-risk pregnancies.
Sharply rising rates have led to debates about when this surgery is appropriate – and when it is not.
Since the world’s first documented case of a woman surviving a cesarean section in medieval Prague, the cesarean section has become a catch-all solution for all manner of problems surrounding a child’s birth.
Heavy reliance—or overreliance—on the procedure has even led an evolutionary biologist at the University of Vienna to hypothesize that, after only two generations of routine use, c-sections are influencing the way humans are evolving.
“As countries increase the number of C-sections they provide, mortality goes down” — but only to a point, said Dr. Thomas Weiser, an assistant professor of surgery at Stanford School of Medicine and one of the study’s authors. When the C-section rate tops 19 percent, benefits for maternal and infant health plateau.
What disapproving friends don’t understand about cesarean births.
The procedure is expensive and risky. Could it also jeopardize babies' long-term health?
The techniques are relatively easy and the main goals simple: Let moms see their babies being born if they want and put newborns immediately on the mother's chest for skin-to-skin contact.
The rate of caesarean births varies widely from hospital to hospital. Some researchers say that’s rooted in staff views and practices.
When it comes to childbirth, the current trend is for women to deliver their babies as naturally as possible. Ideally, a "natural" birth means little to no pain medication, freedom from the tangle of IV lines and, possibly, also freedom from hospitals and doctors altogether. Some women are willing to go so far as to squat in a mountain stream to grunt their little kicker into the world.
In many parts of the world, women are having more Cesarean sections than medically necessary. Recent abuses of pregnant women in Brazil have sparked a small, vocal movement of activists who want mothers to have more say in the delivery room.
I understand we have a national epidemic on our hands with the C-section rate hovering above 30 percent. Many, if not most, are done for the wrong reasons. But there is a time and a place for them.
Frequently asked questions from recovering c-section moms.
I'm Dana Sullivan Kilroy. Welcome to Plan C, where I blog about pregnancy and birth by c-section. I'm not a medical professional but I have had plenty of experience with the topic. I delivered all 3 of my kids by Cesarean and co-wrote a book about it ("The Essential C-Section Guide").
Data are for the U.S. 2017
Number of vaginal deliveries: 2,621,010
Number of Cesarean deliveries: 1,232,339
Percent of all deliveries by Cesarean: 32.0%
How can I make sense of what I hear about cesarean section and vaginal birth?
In this topic, learn about having a c-section, including what happens during a c-section, how to prepare for it and what recovery’s like. Find out some medical reasons for a c-section and if it’s risky for you or your baby.
If there are problems with your pregnancy, you and your provider may plan for a c-section. If you’re planning to have a c-section, find out why waiting until at least 39 weeks is so important for your baby.
Recovery from a C-section takes longer than does recovery from a vaginal birth. And like other types of major surgery, C-sections also carry a higher risk of complications.
Public heath experts think that many c-sections are unnecessary, so it is important for pregnant women to get the facts about c-sections before they deliver. Women should find out what c-sections are, why they are performed, and the pros and cons of this surgery.
The surgery is relatively safe for mother and baby. Still, it is major surgery and carries risks. It also takes longer to recover from a C-section than from vaginal birth. After healing, the incision may leave a weak spot in the wall of the uterus. This could cause problems with an attempted vaginal birth later. However, more than half of women who have a C-section can give vaginal birth later.
A caesarean section is usually carried out when a normal vaginal birth could put you or your unborn baby at risk – for example, because:
•your labour doesn't progress naturally
•you have placenta praevia (where the placenta is low lying in the womb and covering part of the womb's entrance)
•you have had two or more previous caesarean sections
•your baby is in the breech (bottom first) position.
Caesarean section rates have been steadily increasing due to a higher number of sections for fetal distress, as diagnosed by cardiotocographic (CTG) monitoring in labour, and the increasing use for breech and multiple pregnancy. The following is based on National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) latest guidance (November 2011).
In this interactive surgery, you will learn why a C-section may be the preferred method for delivery, the surgical steps taken to perform a C-section, and the details for recovering after a C-section. So scrub in, and let’s see if the mother is having a boy or a girl!