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Maternal deaths rise in the U.S.: study

Posted by on May. 4, 2014 at 1:52 PM
  • 71 Replies

Maternal deaths related to childbirth and pregnancy were up in the United States between 2003 and 2013, a new study revealed.

This was also the case in seven other countries, including Afghanistan, El Salvador and Belize, according to the report from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) at the University of Washington.

The maternal mortality rate per 100,000 live births in the U.S. rose from 17.6 in 2003 to 18.5 in 2013. It was 12.4 in 1990.

The rate is still low compared to those in poor countries, but it is much higher than the figures for developed countries like Canada (8.2), Saudi Arabia (7) and the UK (6.1).

“For American women, high-risk pregnancies and the number of women with inadequate access to preventive and maternal health care are just two potential causes of this trend," study author Dr. Nicholas Kassebaum said in a release.

Other possible contributors include complications from obesity, diabetes and hypertension and the prevalence of Cesarean sections, researchers said.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention previously reported the alarming increase.

The agency estimates that about 650 women in the U.S. die every year from childbirth or pregnancy complications.

The IHME report did include some good news — the global maternal death rate fell sharply between 1990 and 2013, dropping from 283 deaths for every 100,000 live births to 209.

In developing countries, the rate fell from 317.6 in 1990 to 232.8 in 2013.

The study was published Friday in the journal The Lancet.


by on May. 4, 2014 at 1:52 PM
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Replies (1-10):
AdrianneHill
by Ruby Member on May. 4, 2014 at 3:31 PM
6 moms liked this
I wonder what the related mortality rates rates in countries where women are given free rein over their birth options from home births with a mid wife present to a hospital epidural birth to a scheduled c section. Whichever mommy wants. Lucky bastards.
My sister in law is Filipino and was shocked that she wasn't asked her birth preference her first ob visit. She and I both wanted c sections from the jump but were rebuffed by our different doctors with the horrors of c sections. After she pushed for eight hours and I lay in a useless birthing bed for five days before we each got our damn c sections. Sometimes women really do know what their bodies are capable of and those bodies don't give a shit that your hospital's c section rate is so high. (Don't want it so high? Quit being the only maternal/prenatal trauma center for two hundred miles as well as the state's main teaching hospital for treating high risk ob patients. Just saying. You picked the population, not me.) My sil knew from the jump that her 4'10, eighty pound frame couldn't push out the two weeks late baby of a man who was 6'4 and over three hundred pounds. The doctors eventually agreed but I'm sure they got an earful in English, Spanish, and Tagalog about how she told them so and that the Philippines were much more civilized. They didn't even ask any questions with her second birth and just scheduled her c section.

But back to the question, I wonder if choosing the surgery beforehand so the patients are more prepared, calm, unafraid and the circumstances are still under control during the surgery would change the health outcomes after the birth? Just wondering. This way we might greatly reduce the number of somewhat accidentally induced emergency c sections and women could be more comfortable with their options.
Dunno, Americans seem to really demand that pregnant and birthing women suffer as much as possible to bring about life. It is kinda sick and disturbing really. It's bordering on misogyny sometimes but it's usually perpetrated by other women so no one notices.

Edited for speaking, clarity, humor, an overzealous autocorrect and a quickly burgeoning "predictive text" artificial awareness in my phone that makes me uneasy. It wants me to say things I don't mean and make people believe that I think in word salad. I think it's a plot. A conspiracy even. Resist it. Fight the power!
Mommy_of_Riley
by Jes on May. 4, 2014 at 3:45 PM
1 mom liked this
I wonder if it has anything to do with the fact that the US is a country that allows women to pick a date to have their baby instead of letting our bodies do what they're meant to do.

A mother at my DD's school found out she was due in November and said "yeah I'm going to schedule her birth on Halloween so she'll have a cool birthday!" What? You're going to purposefully schedule a c-section 2 weeks before your due date? Why?!?
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momtoscott
by on May. 4, 2014 at 4:17 PM

I could see why allowing people to schedule C sections prior to term could lead to a higher newborn death rate, but not to the significantly higher maternal death rate the article describes.  Although it could be a small factor in the increase.  Much less risky for the mom than the baby.  

I had an emergency C section, not a scheduled one, and even that was pretty uncomplicated.  

Quoting Mommy_of_Riley: I wonder if it has anything to do with the fact that the US is a country that allows women to pick a date to have their baby instead of letting our bodies do what they're meant to do. A mother at my DD's school found out she was due in November and said "yeah I'm going to schedule her birth on Halloween so she'll have a cool birthday!" What? You're going to purposefully schedule a c-section 2 weeks before your due date? Why?!?


jllcali
by on May. 5, 2014 at 2:26 AM
1 mom liked this
A C-section is abdominal surgery. Any surgery carriestthe risk of death. Especially abdominal surgery. Our bodies are not designed to be cut into. They are designed to birth babies. Increased number of c sections has a direct impact on the maternal mortality rate. (sometimes circumstances require a c section but too many in this country are not medically necessary)

Quoting momtoscott:

I could see why allowing people to schedule C sections prior to term could lead to a higher newborn death rate, but not to the significantly higher maternal death rate the article describes.  Although it could be a small factor in the increase.  Much less risky for the mom than the baby.  

I had an emergency C section, not a scheduled one, and even that was pretty uncomplicated.  

Quoting Mommy_of_Riley: I wonder if it has anything to do with the fact that the US is a country that allows women to pick a date to have their baby instead of letting our bodies do what they're meant to do.

A mother at my DD's school found out she was due in November and said "yeah I'm going to schedule her birth on Halloween so she'll have a cool birthday!" What? You're going to purposefully schedule a c-section 2 weeks before your due date? Why?!?

goldpandora
by Bronze Member on May. 5, 2014 at 2:46 AM
2 moms liked this

I wonder whether having paid maternity leave might not change things substantially ...

turtle68
by Mahinaarangi on May. 5, 2014 at 3:29 AM
2 moms liked this

I think a huge factor would be because of the prenatal care and having access to it.....so many things can cause the death of a woman during pregnancy and if you cannot afford to access doctors and or medication because your prices are ridiculous...then I can see how that could cause undue death.

The c-section IMO is probably the lower reason....just my opinion :-)

Mom2Just1
by Platinum Member on May. 5, 2014 at 8:32 AM
2 moms liked this
We are an induce happy country. We also do c sections for stupid reasons.
VooDooB
by The Corrupter on May. 5, 2014 at 9:40 AM
1 mom liked this

I agree. I've watched dozens of friends and family members over the last several years posting about their induction dates - and all of them have ended in C-sections. Whereas if they would have just waited for their bodies to let things progress nauturally, I'm sure the CS would have been avoided. I get it ... I've been there. The waiting at the end of your uncomfortable pregnancy is very hard. But I think this elective c-section hooplah should be more regulated if there's no medical reason for it. 

Quoting Mom2Just1: We are an induce happy country. We also do c sections for stupid reasons.


"Hang on, let me send a PM to Jesus so he can join this name calling ignorance ...he's into that these days ...at least according to his peeps."
- sak

Mom2Just1
by Platinum Member on May. 5, 2014 at 9:43 AM
Yep! My dr does not induce unless medical. Even then it is a decision not made lightly.

Quoting VooDooB:

I agree. I've watched dozens of friends and family members over the last several years posting about their induction dates - and all of them have ended in C-sections. Whereas if they would have just waited for their bodies to let things progress nauturally, I'm sure the CS would have been avoided. I get it ... I've been there. The waiting at the end of your uncomfortable pregnancy is very hard. But I think this elective c-section hooplah should be more regulated if there's no medical reason for it. 

Quoting Mom2Just1: We are an induce happy country. We also do c sections for stupid reasons.

stringtheory
by Platinum Member on May. 5, 2014 at 9:44 AM
I wish I could double like for your last paragraph. That is all.

Quoting AdrianneHill: I wonder what the related mortality rates rates in countries where women are given free rein over their birth options from home births with a mid wife present to a hospital epidural birth to a scheduled c section. Whichever mommy wants. Lucky bastards.
My sister in law is Filipino and was shocked that she wasn't asked her birth preference her first ob visit. She and I both wanted c sections from the jump but were rebuffed by our different doctors with the horrors of c sections. After she pushed for eight hours and I lay in a useless birthing bed for five days before we each got our damn c sections. Sometimes women really do know what their bodies are capable of and those bodies don't give a shit that your hospital's c section rate is so high. (Don't want it so high? Quit being the only maternal/prenatal trauma center for two hundred miles as well as the state's main teaching hospital for treating high risk ob patients. Just saying. You picked the population, not me.) My sil knew from the jump that her 4'10, eighty pound frame couldn't push out the two weeks late baby of a man who was 6'4 and over three hundred pounds. The doctors eventually agreed but I'm sure they got an earful in English, Spanish, and Tagalog about how she told them so and that the Philippines were much more civilized. They didn't even ask any questions with her second birth and just scheduled her c section.

But back to the question, I wonder if choosing the surgery beforehand so the patients are more prepared, calm, unafraid and the circumstances are still under control during the surgery would change the health outcomes after the birth? Just wondering. This way we might greatly reduce the number of somewhat accidentally induced emergency c sections and women could be more comfortable with their options.
Dunno, Americans seem to really demand that pregnant and birthing women suffer as much as possible to bring about life. It is kinda sick and disturbing really. It's bordering on misogyny sometimes but it's usually perpetrated by other women so no one notices.

Edited for speaking, clarity, humor, an overzealous autocorrect and a quickly burgeoning "predictive text" artificial awareness in my phone that makes me uneasy. It wants me to say things I don't mean and make people believe that I think in word salad. I think it's a plot. A conspiracy even. Resist it. Fight the power!
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