Most people have no clue what VBAC is. However, if you are pregnant, and you’ve already had a child by cesarean section, you probably know what VBAC is, and you may wonder if you are a candidate for it. VBAC stands for Vaginal Birth after Cesarean.
Why a Vaginal Birth is Preferred
A vaginal birth is preferred by patients for a number of reasons. First, there is no visible scarring. Second, you will heal faster from this type of birth. Third, there are fewer complications during the birth and the healing process. A vaginal birth is always better for the mother and the child – except in certain cases.
Is a VBAC Possible?
Recently, the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology updated the guidelines for VBAC. In the past, if you had one cesarean, you would have a cesarean for all future births as well – no questions asked.
If you have had a cesarean section in the past, but you are interested in attempting a vaginal birth, be sure to discuss this with your doctor early in your pregnancy. This isn’t possible for all women, however in many instances, the woman can attempt a vaginal birth, and it becomes apparent during the labor if this will be possible or not.
Some doctors simply will not agree to a VBAC due to the risks that are involved. If your doctor does not agree, find out his or her reasons. If those reasons do not pertain specifically to a health issue that you already have or have had, consult with another doctor to get their expert opinion. It could be that you simply need a different doctor.
What are the Risks Associated with VBAC
In the past, the biggest risk for VBAC was uterine rupture. This can have tragic consequences for the mother and the baby, and the odds of it happening are anywhere from one in one hundred to one in two hundred VBACs.
The situation that caused you to have a cesarean section in the first place could still be a factor, and of course there will be risks associated with that as well. In some cases, women have had cesarean sections because of the baby’s size, and this is not an issue with a subsequent pregnancy, enabling them to have a VBAC with fewer risks.