Once a caesarean, always a caesarean?

This is a fear many women experience following an emergency caesarean. No surprise really, an emergency caesarean is never planned, and some women find the experience highly traumatic, making it one they want to avoid ever going through again.

This is where being informed comes in.

In many cases a previous caesarean does not need to mean your next birth also has to be a caesarean.

Being informing about your rights is an important step in influencing such outcomes, but there are other factors to consider, namely:

  • The reason for your last caesarean – occasionally there are medical conditions or previous birth complications which are likely to recur, and which mean a repeat caesarean is a safer delivery method
  • How your current pregnancy is progressing – there may well be different circumstances this time round which indicate a repeat caesarean may still be a safer prospect
  • When is a recommendation for a repeat caesarean just that – a recommendation? Knowing the difference between recommendation and necessity means you can negotiate more effectively. For example, contrary to popular belief, your baby presenting in a breech position does not have to mean caesarean delivery

All that said, you may well want to choose a caesarean next time round for a whole host of valid reasons. Assuming this choice is based on solid information and the progress of this next pregnancy doesn’t dictate otherwise, there should be no reason why you should not be able to plan a repeat caesarean. Easier said than done of course, multiple barriers may well be put in your way. Here again, knowledge is power. Make sure you have clear reasons for your request and fight your corner.