Successful natural birth after Caesarean

accreditation
iStock
Nearly two-thirds of women who had a Caesarean delivery for their first child were successful when they attempted a natural birth for their second baby, British researchers found.

The study, published in BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, used data on almost 144 000 British women who had their first baby by C-section between 2004 and 2011. The researchers found that 52% of them attempted a vaginal birth for their second baby.

"This study shows encouraging results with the majority of women who attempted a natural delivery after a primary C-section being successful," journal deputy editor John Thorp said in a journal news release.

Of the women who attempted a vaginal birth for their second baby, 63% had a successful delivery. Black women had a lower success rate than white women (50% vs. 66%), and women older than 34 had a lower success rate than those aged 24 and younger (59% vs. 69%).

Women aged 24 and younger were more likely to attempt natural delivery for their second child than women older than 34, the study found. And Asian women and black women were more likely than white women to attempt natural delivery for their second child.

Risk assessment

The reason for a C-section in the first birth strongly determined the likelihood of a successful vaginal delivery for the second birth. Women with a history of failed induced labour were almost twice as likely to be unsuccessful when attempting a vaginal birth after previously having a C-section.

The researchers also found that the rates of attempted and successful vaginal birth after an earlier C-section varied between hospitals for reasons that could not be explained.

Study leader Hannah Knight said an informed discussion about whether or not to attempt a vaginal delivery after a Caesarean section requires an assessment of the risk of emergency Caesarean.

"This paper provides valuable information both for women and the obstetricians and midwives caring for them," Knight, of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, said in the news release.

The majority of women with an uncomplicated first C-section are candidates for a vaginal delivery the next time around, "but our data found that only half of those women chose this option," she noted.

More information

The American Academy of Paediatrics has more about Caesarean delivery.

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For 14 free days, you can have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today. Thereafter you will be billed R75 per month. You can cancel anytime and if you cancel within 14 days you won't be billed. 
Subscribe to News24
Voting Booth
Gauteng DA leader Solly Msimanga says the party's voters want it to explore conditional coalition talks with the ANC. 
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
It's a step in the right direction. An ANC-DA coalition would be the most stable option for SA
32% - 3552 votes
The DA should focus on working with all opposition parties, including the EFF, to unseat the ANC
15% - 1598 votes
The DA should rather remain in opposition than form a coalition with the ANC or the EFF
53% - 5861 votes
Vote
Rand - Dollar
16.97
+0.2%
Rand - Pound
20.34
-0.2%
Rand - Euro
17.57
-0.1%
Rand - Aus dollar
11.37
-0.0%
Rand - Yen
0.12
+0.1%
Gold
1,754.90
+0.3%
Silver
21.32
+0.3%
Palladium
1,867.36
+1.5%
Platinum
1,012.40
+0.6%
Brent Crude
83.03
-0.2%
Top 40
66,816
0.0%
All Share
73,128
0.0%
Resource 10
71,369
0.0%
Industrial 25
88,068
0.0%
Financial 15
16,117
0.0%
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo
Editorial feedback and complaints

Contact the public editor with feedback for our journalists, complaints, queries or suggestions about articles on News24.

LEARN MORE