Cesarean Section

Cesarean Section
Editiorial by Senior Midwife Tonya Brooks

The Natural Birth & Women’s Center Staff and I remain concerned about the high and rising cesarean rates. And we believe reporters should take a look at long term infant and rising maternal death rates and examine the facts before reporting that cesareans are safer. We have compliled a huge database of research on cesarean sections, much of which we have included below for your convenience to make your own informed decisions.
The rising cesarean section rate has not improved long term infant outcomes nor improved survival rates of anyone but high-risk babies. However, cesarean sections have increased maternal morbidity and death and the rate are still rising.

Longer Recovery

Cesarean sections take up to six full weeks to recover as opposed to vaginal deliveries, which usually take a few hours.


Infection rates are higher in cesarean births, often as high as 33%. Post cesarean section wound infections are a serious and common complaint.

Blood Loss and Death

Cesareans do increase maternal blood loss, hemorrhage and death rates. Post cesarean healing can cause adhesive tissue to grow the uterus to the abdominal wall causing pain with movement, sex, and driving, and increasing early hysterectomy. Cesareans put future pregnancies at risk for uterine rupture not only in labor. Uterine ruptures while rare, can occur in pregnancy, creating a risk factor women with unscarred uteruses do not have.

Bladder Problems?

Pregnancy, not birth, causes bladder problems later on in life. There is conflicting but no real evidence that c-sections improve a women’s chances of having fewer bladder problems. Bladder problems occur with a large percentage of women who have never been pregnant. Bladder problems are more related to genetics and hormones.


Finally, women who give birth by c-section can’t pick up their baby without pain, nurse without pain, hold or care for other children at all. Those mothers trade a few hours of labor for at least two solid weeks of post op pain, often requiring heavy dugs like codeine, which does get into breast milk.

Accepting reports and “junk science” as fact causes thousands of women to risk unnecessary surgery by implying surgery doesn’t hurt. Maybe we should all look a little harder.

During the Rose Bowl, I was called from a hospital to help a woman having baby #4 after three successful vaginal deliveries. Doctors decided to augment the labor with pitocin. This caused a fetal distress and an emergency c-section. The baby is OK, but the cesarean section caused the mother to bleed out after the c-section, resulting in a second surgery to remove her uterus and ovary. The young mother of four is on life support. She may make it. But there is a price to pay for doctors whose real motivation for “planned” cesarean in not reducing risk, but is beating malpractice cases, and it is a price that is paid in blood and future fertility risk by women.

Cesarean Section Research ~ Looking at the Risk

(to download article, right-click and click “save link as”)

Comparing complications in intended vaginal and cesarean deliveries

The risk of unexplained antepartum stillbirth in second pregnancies following cesarean section in the €rst pregnancy

Cesarean section Asthma at 8 years of age in children born by C Section

Mode of Delivery – Effects on Gut Microbiota and Humoral Immunity

The risk of unexplained antepartum stillbirth in second pregnancies following cesarean section in the first pregnancy

Maternal brain response to own baby-cry is affected by cesarean section delivery

American Society of Anesthesiologists’ Practice Guidelines for Obstetric Anesthesia

Birth by cesarean section, allergic rhinitis, and allergic sensitization among children with a parental history of atopy

Cesarean section is associated with an increased risk of childhood-onset type 1 diabetes mellitus- a meta-analysis of observational studies

Cesarean Delivery and Peripartum Hysterectomy

Cesarean Delivery as a Barrier for Breastfeeding Initiation- The Puerto Rican Experience

Cesarean Delivery May Affect the Early Biodiversity of Intestinal Bacteria

Cesarean Delivery- Background, Trends, and Epidemiology.

The risk of unexplained antepartum stillbirth in second pregnancies following cesarean section in the €rst pregnancy

Increased risk of stroke in patients who undergo cesarean section delivery- a nationwide population-based study

Is a breech presentation at term more frequent in women with a history of cesarean delivery?

Maternal morbidity following a trial of labor after cesarean section vs elective repeat cesarean delivery- a systematic review with metaanalysis

Mothers’ Reports of Postpartum Pain Associated with Vaginal and Cesarean Deliveries- Results of a National Survey

Severe maternal morbidity and the mode of delivery

Study delivered by elective cesarean section- cohort risk of respiratory morbidity in term infants

Incidence and risk patterns of venous thromboembolism in pregnancy and puerperium—a register-based case-control study

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