Here's a list of questions from ICAN:
- What is your rate of inductions?
- What are your partners perspectives on VBAC?
- What percentage of your patients do you assist yourself? (most docs
are in group practices and take turns being on call for births)
- What is your cesarean rate (beware if it is in the 20s or higher or doc can't answer)
- How many VBACs do you attend be year? (Don't expect a huge
number. Look for enthusiasm and knowledge. Qualities are lacking if
he/she asks you to sign a VBAC consent form that exaggerates the side
effects of VBAC and includes none of the risks of a repeat c-section.
These seem to be more common in Central Ohio)
- Of those patients in your practice who wanted VBACs, how many were successful (expect at least 35%)
- What do you think my chances are of VBAC success, given my
childbirth history? (look for enthusiasm about VBACs, especially
yours. Look for someone who treats you as an individual).
- In what instances is a repeat c-section necessary?
- What kind of monitoring would you require in labor?
- Do you support alternative birth positions?
- What are the hospital policies regarding VBACs (i.e. continuous monitoring, mandatory epidural, allowed to eat/drink, etc.)
- What are some reasons that you might deny a trial of labor?
- If I go past 42 weeks what methods might you use to encourage labor?
- How do you usually manage a post-date pregnancy? (42 weeks per the World Health Organization) How do you manage suspected CPD?
- Ask for an example of when a repeat c-section would be medically necessary.
- Ask, "what if my labor stalled at 4cm? What would you do to help encourage labor to get going again?"
- Ask if a provider uses medications or non-invasive methods like moving and walking.
- What will you do to help prevent tearing?
- What's a reasonable length of time for a VBAC labor if I'm healthy
and my baby appears to be healthy? (research indicates greater success
rates when women have more leeway on length of labor)
- How many people can I have with me during labor? what is the hospital's policy?
- What are your usual recommendations about IVs, pitocin,
prostaglandin gel, amniotomy, epidurals, confinement to bed, EFM, pushing
positions and so on. (can also call L&D and ask the nurses what to
expect with a particular provider. Some will discuss others will not.)
- How close together are your appointments? (the closer they are the
more you'll have to wait and less time you'll have with your doctor)
- Look for someone with "heart." Is he/she empathetic? Attitude can
enhance or inhibit the likelihood of VBAC. Does he/she make you feel
good about your decision? Do they listen and answer your questions? Do
they offer support when you voice your fears? Do they take your calls?