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After a previous delivery via caesarean section, expectant mothers have the option of attempting a vaginal birth for their next delivery. While this procedure became a popular method of both increasing profits for hospitals and reducing the costs of medical care, there are significant risks involved for both mother and child during a vaginal birth after caesarean.

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Women still have this option of delivery, but doctors need to fully inform the mother of the potential risks involved and they must also closely monitor both the health of the mother and baby during a vaginal birth after caesarean.

Risk of Uterine Rupture During Vaginal Birth After Caesarean

Uterine rupture is one of the biggest risks involved when a woman opts for a vaginal birth after caesarean. A uterine rupture occurs as the uterus tears open, usually along the area where scarring exists from a previous caesarean section. Since some women will experience noticeable symptoms of a uterine rupture such as extreme pain and other women will have virtually no symptoms, it is challenging for doctors to determine which women are at risk for uterine rupture. Only through a pelvic exam and close monitoring of the heart rate of the infant can doctors predict when a uterine rupture has occurred.

Since the infant is not receiving adequate amounts of blood during a vaginal birth after caesarean, there is an increased risk of uterine rupture during this procedure. If a uterine rupture occurs, doctors often have less than 17 minutes in which to perform an emergency caesarean section and save the life of both the mother and infant.

Since there is an increased risk of uterine rupture associated with a vaginal birth after caesarean, it is essential for a physician to fully inform pregnant women of the potential risks involved with this method of delivery.

Types of Injuries During a Vaginal Birth After Caesarean

If a uterine rupture occurs during a vaginal birth after caesarean, the effects on both mother and child can be devastating and life-threatening. Since the baby does not receive enough oxygen during a uterine rupture, the injuries sustained to the infant are often the most damaging. Death, injury to vital organs and brain damage are a few of the most common injuries that can occur to an infant during a vaginal birth after caesarean.

When a uterine rupture occurs, the mother often requires a hysterectomy, which can cause other complications and problems such as infection and being unable to carry future pregnancies.