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Fact 1: A C-section Is Major Surgery
Despite being the most common surgery in the U.S., C-sections are often overlooked as a simple procedure with no major risk factors. Contrary to popular belief, Cesarean deliveries carry a laundry list of dangers including infection, re-hospitalization, decrease in bowel function, increased risk for hysterectomy and bladder damage.
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Fact 2: Recovery Is Longer
Although C-sections are often described as the easiest option , when you include both the surgical healing and the long-term healing of the uterus, the recovery takes longer than the 6 weeks post-vaginal birth. In the weeks after delivery, women whove had surgical births often express more discomfort, pain and use more pharmaceutical pain relief.
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Fact 3: Due Dates Arent Exact
Studies show that elective Cesarean delivery before 39 weeks may increase the risk of a premature delivery of your child due to the inaccuracies in estimated due dates. Infants delivered at 37 weeks gestation are twice as likely to develop complications as those delivered after 39 weeks gestation.
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Fact 4: Baby Could Suffer Breathing Difficulties
A 2007 study conducted by the American Academy of Family Physicians showed an increase in the risk of breathing difficulties and longer hospital stays in infants born by non-emergency or elective Cesarean sections. The information proved that in many cases, these babies may not have been to term or ready to be delivered, which increased their likelihood of breathing troubles.
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Fact 5: Placenta Problems Increase
Placenta problems in future pregnancies increase with every surgical birth. One of the most dangerous of these conditions is Placenta Acretta, which is when the placenta grows into the uterine wall, often requiring an emergency hysterectomy. This risk goes from 0.6% with a second C-section to 2.1% with a third C-section, and increases with every C-section thereafter.
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Fact 6: There Are Fewer Good Bacteria
When babies are born vaginally, they are exposed to good bacteria that live inside the vagina of the mother. The exposure to this bacteria is an important process in helping boost or jumpstart the immune system of the infant. Infants born by Cesarean are exposed to less favorable bacteria found in hospitals and on the skin of their mothers. Of special concern are traces of STAPH infections and Streptococcus pneumoniae, which can cause pneumonia.
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Fact 7: Health Insurance Can Be Denied
Peggy Robertson of Colorado made national headlines a couple of years ago when she was denied medical insurance because she had a previous Cesarean delivery. Denied coverage or higher premiums for women with previous surgical deliveries is a growing trend across the country. The insurance companies fear higher medical costs, more complications and subsequent Cesarean deliveries for women who have more than one C-section.
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Fact 8: Induction Can Lead to a C-section
A recent study published in the Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology of over 8,000 first-time mothers showed that inducing their labors doubled their risks for having a Cesarean delivery, which is a reason why elective or routine induction is not recommended by the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG). Despite this guideline, currently over 40% of women have their labors induced in the United States, though its not clear what percent are medical or elective.
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Fact 9: C-sections Are Common
In 2008the most recent year for which there's datathe C-section rate in the U.S. stood at 32.3% of all births. That marked the 12th consecutive annual increase in the surgical birth rate.
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Fact 10: It Can Be Life-saving
When a C-section is medically necessary, it can be an amazing and lifesaving procedure for mom and baby. Conditions that necessitate C-sections can include placenta previa, cord prolapse and fetal distress during labor.
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Read More Things to Know Before Choosing a C-Section
- 1. The problem with doctors, not moms, picking the birth method »
- 2. Trying to skip a repeat Cesarean »
- 3. Why an early C-section could harm your baby »
- 4. Babies born via C-section have more breathing problems »
- 5. How multiple C-sections put women at risk »
- 6. Babies born via C-section don’t get important bacteria »
- 7. Insurance company tells woman to get sterilized »
- 8. Induced labors are twice as likely to end in C-section »
- 9. AJOG study results: Too many women are pushed into C-sections »
- 10. How to make surgical birth more pleasant »