Should Women Avoid a Repeat C-Section?

A government panel is urging doctors to rethink C-section policies brought on by the overwhelming number of lawsuits filed against physicians in the last decade. These days, many women who undergo a C-section for their first birth are encouraged to only have C-sections thereafter, and this panel is suggesting that physicians educate these women about both the risks and the benefits of having vaginal birth after C-section, or VBAC. In the United States, less than 10 percent of women having VBAC, and more and more focus is being put on the reasons for the decline over the past decade.

Currently, the data suggests that if you have a C-section, the complication rate is a little higher for mothers, but if you VBAC, the complication rate increases for the baby - so it's a double-edged sword. Now, as a parent, my thinking is that I would do anything for my kids, so I tend to lean more towards a repeat C-section. Every time you have a patient going into surgery, you explain the risks to them and discuss their options - but if one of those complications actually does arise, it's like everything you said is out the window and you wind up in court. A perfect example is a large baby born with a broken clavicle because of the mother's own anatomy being too small to support a healthy vaginal birth. The parents file a lawsuit and it goes on the physician's record. So in many cases, physicians practice what's called defensive medicine.

So the question is, who may not be a good candidate for VBAC?

Well, some of the conditions that make VBAC risky include_ -Obesity -Gestational diabetes -Preeclampsia -History of a C-section for a large baby

Unfortunately, we still have a lot of liability issues when it comes to delivering children. But one of the most important things women can do to ensure a healthy pregnancy is getting good pre-conception care. Many women who do not have health insurance don't qualify for it until they are already pregnant and it's that lack of care that often increases their risks whether they deliver surgically or vaginally.