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In the month of September, I had a meeting with Congressman Christopher Shays of Connecticut. We discussed the high number of c-sections taking place in our state, as well as nationally, and what the Government as well as groups like ICAN can do to help and change that to make birth safer for mothers and babies. Well during that meeting I was promised some statistics on cesarean births paid for by medicaid as opposed to private insurance companies, and I received that information today.
The numbers are astonishing, to make sure you sit down!

In The United States as a whole, 40% of all c-sections that take place is being paid for by the government through medicaid. Yes, 40%!
How many are actually being paid for by private insurance companies?  54%.

That is a HUGE number of c-sections that the government is footing the bill for.
In a country where only 10-15% of c-sections are truly MEDICALLY NECESSARY the tax payers are footing the bill for 25-30% of elective or non medically necessary c-sections!

If that doesn't make you say hmmmmmm or piss you off, I don't know what will!
I know that generally a trial of labour is less risky than a repeat c section. However, most of my research is focused on women with newer style low tranverse bikini cuts (as indeed mine was). But I have a friend who received the classic cut (goodness knows why) which goes vertically from the belly button to the bikini line. She was told that she'd never be able to birth vaginally and that she would always need c sections. My first thought that it was a fallacy, because all of my research about VBAC has suggested otherwise. I just think her doctor is not very VBAC friendly and seemed a bit too c section endorsing to me. I thought that a HBAC would probably be out as she'd need to be more carefully monitored. I'm assuming that dehiscense (sp?) and ruptue rates are higher in women who have been cut in this way, however I'm still sure that a vaginal birth would be possible if she was to receive monitoring and no augmentation/induction drugs (which I know increase the risk of uterine rupture). I've told her my belief however I would like to make sure I'm giving her the right facts. If it's blatantly impossible/very dangerous for a woman who'd received a classic cut to try for a vaginal birth it'd be good to find out.

I'd really love to find some research to show her. If she was happy to have repeat c sections I'd not bother, because I don't like to press my opinions on other people. I'll give them information but don't want to pressure them. However, she has expressly said that she would love a natural birth and I really want to find out if that's possible.

Please forgive me if this is the wrong place to post this.

29 September 2008 @ 05:08 pm
Written by Eileen Sullivan, with assistance from her husband, Patrick.

After checking, it seems I was a bit off on the frequency of deadly lightning strikes... you are more likely to suffer a rupture than to be struck and killed by lightning, by about thirty times. Then again, how many people do you know who HAVE been struck and killed by lightning?

Ruptures are also more common than dying in a plane crash. Henci Goer's review of the literature on VBACs found 46 ruptures in 15,154 labors. This equates to a 0.3% rate... or 1 in 333, if you prefer. Your annual risk of dying in a plane crash is 1 in 4000, according to one source, and 1 in 700,000 according to another. I can't explain the massive discrepancy between the two figures, except to quote Mark Twain about "lies, damn lies, and statistics."

Since you asked, here are some more probability statistics for you:

Your risk of dying in a car accident, over the course of your lifetime, is between 1 in 42 and 1 in 75. This is roughly 4 to 5 times greater than the risk of uterine rupture.

You're about twice as likely to have your car stolen (that's an annual risk) than to experience a uterine rupture.

Your odds of being murdered are 1 in 140 over the course of your lifetime. That's 2 times more likely than the risk of rupture.

The annual risk of having a heart attack is 1 in 160, 2 times more likely than rupture. Your risk of dying from heart disease is roughly 1 in 6, or 55 times greater than your risk of rupture.

The annual risk of having a heart attack is 1 in 160, 2 times more likely than rupture. Your risk of dying from heart disease is roughly 1 in 6, or 55 times greater than your risk of rupture.

If you're a smoker, your risk of dying from lung cancer is 1 and a half times more likely than a VBAC mom rupturing during her labor.

You're about 17 times more likely to contract an STD this year than you are to have a uterine rupture; more likely to contract gonorrhea than to rupture, as well.

You're 13 times more likely to get food poisoning than to rupture.

You're more likely to have twins than a uterine rupture. Odds of twins: 1 in 90. That's about 3 1/2 times the likelihood of rupture.

If you ride horseback, you're 3 times more likely to die in a riding accident than you are to experience a uterine rupture.

If you ride a bike on the street, you are 4 times more likely to die in an accident (annual risk) than you are to suffer a rupture.

Having a serious fire in your home during the next year is twice as likely as experiencing a rupture.

You're ten times as likely to win at roulette as you are to have a uterine rupture.

If you flip a coin, you'll be more likely to get heads (or tails) 8 times in a row than to rupture.

The risk of cord prolapse is 1 in 37 (2.7%), or nearly ten times more likely than that of rupture.

And a final irony (heads up, those of you who want a doc to give his/her opinion on your likelihood of rupture next pregnancy!)...

You're 6 times more likely to have a doctor who is an impostor than you are to suffer a rupture. Two percent of docs are phonies (1 in 50), according to several sources I found.

So instead of worrying about rupture, why not take a few minutes to check up on your doctor's credentials? ;) It'd be a more profitable use of your time, and a substantially more likely cause for alarm.
24 September 2008 @ 08:23 pm
How do you feel about scheduled c-sections for no medical reason?
19 August 2008 @ 11:33 am

If you have not heard about it yet, check it out!  It is very important for women to take this survey! 

The Birth Survey

*The Birth Survey Now Available Nationwide!*

For years, consumers have enthusiastically shared online reviews of movies,
restaurants, products and services, but readily available information about
maternity care providers and birth settings was nearly unattainable-
but no
longer. The Birth Survey is now available to
all women in the US who have given birth in the last three years. Women can
now give consumer reviews of doctors, midwives, hospitals, and birth
centers, learn about the choices and birth experiences of others, and view
data on hospital and birth center standard practices and intervention rates.

X-Posted all over LJ
08 August 2008 @ 09:39 pm
Welcome everyone, I am glad to see so many people join today!

I am Danielle, I am 23, SAHM to my son Camden who is 8 months old. He was born Via C-section after a failed induction in December.
I felt as though I had no other option. My OB/GYN really made it seem like it was do or die. So of course I blindly followed.
I am glad that after the fact I became educated about induction, c-sections, and all the horrible interventions that landed me in the OR that day.
Since then I also started the only ICAN chapter in my state. (International Cesarean Awareness Network)

I am planning on going back to school soon (when we financially can take on another bill) to become a midwife.
We are planning more children and I am hoping for a VBAC next time around.

Welcome again, I hope to have a great group here!
08 August 2008 @ 01:19 pm
We are mothers... sisters... aunts... grandmothers... cousins... women... who have been directly effected by the cesarean birth epidemic in our country. Whether our cesarean birth was medically necessary or the result of an impatient doctor, we are all coming together for the same reasons, and that is to try and do something about the rising and unsafe c-section rates in our country today.

Since 1996 cesarean births have risen 45%.

That is a pretty strong statistic.
45% is a lot.
45% is a high number.

In 2000, The American Academy of Gynecologists and Obstetricians, as well as The American Medical Association, and The US Department of Health and Human Services all released major reports about the cesarean rates and stressing that they need to come down a significant amount.

Here we are in 2008 and our cesarean birth rates have only grown over the past 8 years.

Did the ACOG, AMA and Department of Health and Human services simply forget about these major reports? Did they ever address what they need to do to help reduce our dangerous cesarean rate?

The World Health Organization continues to stay on top of this issue considering we are over double what they consider to be safe in The United States.

Why are more people not concerned?