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VBAC or C-section?

Clip Number: 36 of 37
Presentation: Vaginal Birth After C-Section (VBAC)
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Reviewed By: Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
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Your alternative to a vaginal delivery is having another c-section. Let's compare the differences between a VBAC and a c-section.
Women who have cesarean deliveries usually spend more time in the hospital, have a higher chance of getting infections, and are more likely to need a blood transfusion, than women who have vaginal deliveries. There are more serious complications associated with c-section because it is a major abdominal surgery. A disadvantage of having more than one c-section is that you may have problems with the placenta during future pregnancies, which may also increase your risk of needing a hysterectomy.
If your doctor feels that you are a good candidate for a VBAC, this delivery method is generally considered safer than a c-section. About 7 out of 10 women who try to have a VBAC are successful. A potential disadvantage of a VBAC is that you might end up having a c-section anyway. Women who need to have an emergency c-section, rather than a planned c-section, have a higher risk of developing infections and other problems after the birth, and usually take longer to recover.
For any woman who has a scar on her uterus, there is an increased risk of uterine rupture during pregnancy and labor. This rarely happens in women who have a horizontal scar on the lower part of their uterus. But, when it does, it may seriously injure you and/or your baby. While uterine rupture is uncommon, it should be considered when making your decision.
Please make sure that you understand the differences between a VBAC and an elective C-section, and discuss your questions or concerns with your doctor before making your decision.

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