Report: 1 in 3 Babies Born Via C-Section
Wednesday, March 24, 2010 1:02 PM
People have been buzzing about the increase in multiple c-sections for a while, but now new research has taken an even closer look at the numbers.
According to this new government report, the c-section rate reached 32% (the highest ever in the U.S.) in 2007, with 1.4 million women going under the knife to deliver their babies. Overall, the national rate has risen more than 50% since 1996 – and six states (Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Nevada, Rhode Island, and Washington) saw an increase of more than 70%. The lowest rates were in Utah and Alaska.
So what gives with the increase? An exact reason is hard to pinpoint right now, according to this New York Times article, but possible explanations include increases in older women having babies, multiple births, and fears among obstetricians that they could be sued for complications that happen after a vaginal delivery. Other factors include a rise in the number of women whose labor is induced (which is more likely to result in a c-section than a natural labor) and those who want to ensure that loved ones can be present for the birth.
But no matter the reasons, there are some critics who caution that c-sections are happening too often, according to the Times. While the procedure can save lives, these experts say that unnecessary surgeries can open moms and babies up to new risk factors.
What do you think of the dramatic increase in c-sections? Share your opinions below.