My first child was born C-section, so does that mean all my children will have to be born like that? I really would like to have a natural childbirth to avoid the long recovery of a C-section again.
Vaginal birth after Cesarean is called a VBAC and has a high success rate. C-sections have become more frequent and account for 15 to 25 percent of all births in North America. The benefits of having a vaginal birth include reducing blood loss, reducing injury and risk of infection, avoiding complications related to the surgery, a shorter hospital stay and a more rapid recovery.
A C-section leaves a scar on the uterus which is a potential area of weakness. There is a possibility it could tear during labour. This is called a uterine rupture that would lead to an emergency C-section. For that reason it is important that for a safe labour after Cesarean section, you should deliver in a hospital where resources are available, should there be complications.
The Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists of Canada says the folllowing conditions are contraindications to vaginal birth after Caesarean section:
The presence of an inverted T uterine scar
Previous surgery that entered the uterine cavity such as the removal of a fibroid
A previous uterine rupture
The presence of a contraindication to labour such as a placenta with a malpresentation.
The SOGC says that provided there are no contraindications, a woman with one previous transverse low segment C-section should be offered a trial of labour after a discussion of the potential risks. You do have the option of a repeat elective C-section. As always, discuss this with your health care provider.
ParentsCanada.com offers expert advice on your pregnancy, baby, breastfeeding, newborn baby sleep, health, and the stages of growth and development. Use our tools for finding great baby names, calculating your due date and more.
Made possible with the support of the Ontario Media Development Corporation