Deciding about vaginal birth after a past C-section

vaginal birth after a past C-section

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Last updated:
10/23/2021

If you’ve had a previous C-section, and you are expecting another baby, vaginal birth may be an option for you. It’s called vaginal birth after cesarean (VBAC). That means that your doctor will make an incision in your abdomen to deliver the baby.

How do you know if you can have a VBAC?

VBAC is not right for everyone– it depends on many things. For example, VBAC may not be safe if you had more than one C-section before or if there are other medical reasons that make VBAC risky. If you want to know more about VBAC and whether it is right for you, talk with your obstetrician or midwife about your personal situation and values.

Is VBAC safer than repeat cesarean?

While some women believe that VBAC is safer than a repeat C-section, this isn’t true. For example, it is possible for you to experience complications, such as bleeding and infection, during or after your delivery. Also, vaginal births can lead to tears of the skin and muscles around your vagina (perineum), which can cause pain and damage that may take weeks or months to heal.

VBAC is a good option if you would like to attempt a vaginal delivery again and you are healthy enough to try it. There are many factors involved in deciding about VBAC. Some women decide that C-section is safer for them. Knowing that your birth team–your physician, midwife, nurse, and support team–is knowledgeable and supportive of VBAC can help make the choice easier.

Women who want to know more about the pros and cons of VBAC should talk with their obstetrician or midwife before they become pregnant again. This will help them decide whether or not VBAC is an appropriate choice for their next pregnancy.

Try now our interactive tool to help you decide Should I Try Vaginal Birth After a Past C-Section (VBAC)?