Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Front page news

I was thrilled when my doula told me about the article on the front page of the Arizona Republic newspaper today: "C-sections linked to future birth risks." Not thrilled about the sad facts in the article, but thrilled that the truth about cesareans is finally becoming front page news. It is my hope that articles like this one will lead to a reduction in unnecessary surgeries.

I was amazed to hear just how much each cesarean increases a woman's risk of placenta accreta. Here's an excerpt:
"Studies and textbooks suggest that the risk of developing an accreta is as high as 4 percent in women who have had two previous Cesareans; that jumps to 60 percent with three C-sections, their physicians said."
60%?! Holy cow.

And another:
"'In the 1950s, the incidence was something like 1 in 30,000 women,' Mills said, adding that newer studies, conducted within the last decade, suggest that the rate has climbed to as high as 1 in 2,500 or even 1 in 500.

"'So there is definitely an increase in occurrence,' he said. 'And in women with C-sections, that's where we've really seen an explosion.'"
This gave me hope:
"Hospitals also are encouraging more pre-natal counseling of C-section risks, particularly if a woman is interested in having multiple children. They say it is possible for a woman who has delivered her first baby via Cesarean to give birth vaginally the second time."
So often I feel discouraged as I hear about record cesarean rates every year. But maybe the trend is coming to an end? I really hope so.

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