Monday, January 16, 2006

More Women Choosing C-Sections

As has been discussed on this site in the past, the c-section rate in the United States is nearing the point where a third of all births in the United States will be by c-section.

Having experienced both kinds of childbirth, I can't fathom why women with normal pregnancies would deliberately choose to have major surgery. This article discusses some of the pros and cons. One of the issues is that we don't know yet what all the long-term ramifications are:

"C-sections are safer, some researchers are finding, without the last-minute rush to surgery after an exhausting trial of labor. But critics of elective C-sections see a downside. Such research is early and conflicting, they say, and science doesn't yet understand the time-honored trip down the birth canal. Babies delivered by cesarean section have more respiratory infections later in life, and may have more gastrointestinal tract problems as well."

One attorney-obstetrician quoted believes the c-section rate will eventually go as high as 60%.


Blogger Patti Hobbs said...

This is so ridiculous to me. I am amazed at changes I've heard of in obstetrics since my youngest was born. It used to be doctors let moms go two weeks after the due date before considering induction; now they are scheduling inductions by the due date. This reminds me of margarine vs. butter. After years of promoting the use of margarine and its non-saturated fats, researchers have discovered that all the trans fats therein contained are bad for you, too. So all this time people have been sold a bill of goods about the merits of margarine. (silly analogy maybe) I had four c-sections before my two natural births. I had a VERY long, intense labor with child number five, but child number six being a breeze made me think that if only I'd had that long labor with number 1, I never would have any c-sections. All were big babies, too--from 9lbs 13oz to 12 lbs 3 oz. To think that C-sections are safter is counter-intuitive.

4:03 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

"To think that C-sections are safter is counter-intuitive."

I couldn't agree more, Patti. It will be interesting to see if eventually the pendulum swings back to encouraging VBACS and discouraging elective c-sections.

Welcome, please visit again!

Best wishes, Laura

5:27 PM  
Blogger Mrs. Happy Housewife said...

I think an induction is a horrible way to give birth. I had one with #2 because insurance wouldn't pay if I delivered more than 10 days past due date. After he was born, it was noticed that he had a place on his lower spine where the skin had just recently closed up. When a baby is overdue, there is a good reason for it.

9:41 AM  
Blogger Laura said...

I very much agree. My c-section with #2 was due to a failed induction attempted at 38 wks. because he was nearly 10 lbs. I don't think the baby or my body were ready -- after 36 hours of induced labor my contractions *stopped*.

#3 and #4 were 41-week VBACS of babies in the 9.0 to 9.9 lb. range, and they were so quick!

10:03 AM  

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