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I delivered my oldest naturally, but my twins by scheduled I am prego again and wondering if there are risks associated with VBAC...I really would prefer another natural birth to another C-section.

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Asked by megmckn at 12:52 PM on Mar. 26, 2009 in Pregnancy

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Answers (6)
  • Check out this site, it really helped me make the decision to have my 2nd vbac.

    Answer by boizmom at 12:54 PM on Mar. 26, 2009

  • Yes there are risks, the biggest one being the slightly increased risk of uterine rupture (0.7-1.5% depending on where you look). To me, that doesn't outweigh the inherent risks of major abdominal surgery, but for some people (including a lot of doctors) it does. On the other side, there are also increased risks for future pregnancies every time you have a C-section, what with the scarring and problems it can cause for implantation and the placenta attaching to the uterine wall. Your doctor will probably be most concerned with the risk of uterine rupture, though, since that's really the only risk I know of that occurs just with a VBAC (versus a first-time birth), and especially since you've already had a successful vaginal birth and there's no reason to think you can't do it again. Good luck!

    Answer by DragonRiderMD at 12:58 PM on Mar. 26, 2009

  • There are risks with a vbac but the risks of major abdominal surgery are generally MORE for women who are great vbac candidates. You can go check out for a ton of information!

    Also, you will want to find a vbac friendly doctor, or a midwife. Inductions, etc, will increase your risk of a repeat c/s so going in more naturally minded is really helpful!

    If your incision is a transverse lower uterine incision, generally the most common now, your risk of uterine rupture is 0.5 %.

    There's a book called "Silent Knife" which was written in the 80's which talks about VBAC safety. According to it VBAC trails were safer for mothers and 80 percent of women who tried VBAC could give birth vaginally.

    ACOG (american college of obstetrics and gynecologists) says repeat sections should be done ONLY when medically necessary, not just because of a previous c/s.

    Answer by celticreverie at 1:21 PM on Mar. 26, 2009

  • I agree with everything celticreverie said! Many doctors are against VBAC these days because of a study that came out (I believe in 1999) saying that VBAC's are dangerous. The study did not distinguish between natural labors and induced. Inducing a VBAC is what makes them so dangerous. The uterus is slightly weakened from the scar and the unnatural contractions brought on by induction put the uterus at undue strain. I believe close to 80% of women who give birth in a hospital are induced/augmented. Doctors don't know how to sit on their hands and let nature happen, they always have to "do something". This is why the safest place for a VBAC is at home in the care of an experienced midwife.

    Answer by TanyaR1024 at 1:31 PM on Mar. 26, 2009

  • There are risks to both. I have had 2 c sections and will be having a 3rd in May. I chose this because my oldest (emergency section) was 7lbs and the next two (scheduled) were over 9. I didn't want to risk another emergency c section. It's really a personal choice, don't let the doctors or hospital try to persuade you either way.


    Answer by Anonymous at 1:37 PM on Mar. 26, 2009

  • VBAC is safer than repeat c-sections. Here's a good site that pits repeat c-sections against VBACs
    The only instances where a repeat c-section is absolutely needed are a baby laying sideways (breech can safely be birthed vaginally, but it MUST be a hands off birth)
    TRUE fetal distress i.e. heart rate plummets and will not rebound in spite of mother changing position and the end of a contraction
    multiples (triplets +) there's a video available of a twin home birth VBAC (HBVAC)
    I think there may be a couple more but my brain isn't working well at the moment. When you remove the necessary reasons it just comes down to preference and in my opinion, a fear of the unknown for women who had c-sections with their first child and not knowing what to expect with a labor without intervention.

    Answer by Anonymous at 5:21 PM on Mar. 26, 2009

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