In USA, over 30% of pregnancies are delivered through cesarean sections. The increasing number of C-sections occurred in the last 3 years caused leading medical authorities to sound an alarm on the matter. The Maternal-Fetal Medicine Society together with National Institute of Child Health and Human Development and American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists organized a “Preventing the First Cesarean Delivery” workshop to identify the prospects of reducing avoidable first time C-section deliveries.
Effects of Primary Cesarean
The chances of a C-section are higher if the woman had a previous cesarean delivery. A first time cesarean delivery resulting in future caesareans increasesnot only health care costs but also the odds for health and mortality risks for both the mother and the baby. If the first cesarean is avoided, it will alsoprevent the increasing chances for post-surgical traumas like bladder problems, uterus integrity and other complications which can have an impact on a future pregnancy.
In US, almost every third pregnancy is delivered with the help of a cesarean so presently there is an almost 30% chance that a pregnancy will not result in a natural birth, because a woman who had a primary cesarean has a 90% chance that the next pregnancy will also have a C-section delivery. This happens especially if the labor was not attempted in the case of a primary cesarean.
A cesarean delivery presents risks for both the mother and the child. The chances of surgical complications or intra operative complications are high along withfuture health issues that might occurin the case of future pregnancies. Increased recovery time and additional medical costs are also part of the problems this workshop analyzed.
The doctors participating in the workshop concluded that it was imperative to promote awareness towardsavoiding primary cesarean deliveries. They had considered the information made available to them, which included maternal, fetal and obstetric indications for a C-section. They also took into consideration factors like, failed initiation, arrest of labor advancement, non-heartening fetal status that resulted in opting for a cesarean delivery.
As a conclusion the workshop participants advise women to consider operative vaginal delivery as an option and recommend professional counseling to help mothers be aware what a first time C-section may bring.
The hospitals and medical professionals need to keep in mind that the right methods like proper education and assistance during pregnancy may also reduce the chances of a first time cesarean delivery.