Many Pennsylvania women who are preparing to give birth neglect to consider the fact that they may end up doing so via a Cesarean section. However, as of 2018, almost a third of all American-born babies underwent delivery through this method, so you would be wise to do some research and prepare yourself for the possibility. The fact that so many more women are now having C-sections than in the past raises important questions about whether all these surgeries were truly warranted.
USA Today reports that C-section deliveries come with an 80% higher risk of complications than traditional vaginal delivery.
C-section delivery trends
The number of women delivering their babies via C-section continues to rise rapidly across the nation. The World Health Organization has long acknowledged that C-sections should constitute somewhere between 10% and 15% of all deliveries. However, 31% of all new mothers now deliver their babies through this method. The C-section delivery rate is also much higher in some health care settings than others, with some hospitals delivering as many as 60% of all babies through C-sections.
C-section health risks
When you deliver your baby through a C-section, rather than vaginally, you face numerous health risks. Any surgery creates hazards. However, some of the specific risks you face during and following a C-section include the risk of infection, blood clot or surgical injury. You may also experience a bad reaction to the anesthesia used during your procedure. Postpartum hemorrhage is also a risk.
The Joint Commission, a respected health care accrediting body, plans to start publicizing the names of hospitals with high C-section rates to see if doing so may help get the numbers back under control.