Wednesday January 22, 2020

Is Vaginal Delivery Better Than Cesarean Birth? Find it Out Here

Opt for a vaginal birth or cesarean delivery?

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Birth
There are several factors which come into play for a vaginal delivery/ birth--if there are no medical or pregnancy related complications. Pixabay

There is a raging debate regarding the pros and cons of a vaginal delivery versus a cesarean birth. A lot has been said about the alarming rise in the incidence of so called unindicated cesarean births in corporate hospitals. Dr Uma Vaidhyanathan, Fortis Hospital, Shalimar Bagh talks about the details of both so you’re better informed.

Being an obstetrician in clinical practice for several years now and having seen both sides, PDr. Vaidhyanathan can safely opine it varies from case-to-case and from patient-to-patient!

“There are several factors which come into play for a vaginal delivery–if there are no medical or pregnancy related complications, the baby size is adequate enough to negotiate through the maternal pelvis, and most importantly, if the mother to be is well tuned for labour pains then nothing better than a vaginal delivery. For this the mother should be well counselled throughout the pregnancy about stages of labour, and should be mentally prepared to go through it. It helps if she has a supportive partner and family to boost her morale throughout the process of labour and delivery. It is definitely more natural, recovery and the period of staying in the hospital is definitely shorter,” confirms Dr Vaidhyanathan.

Child Birth
A lot has been said about the alarming rise in the incidence of so called unindicated cesarean birth in corporate hospitals. Pixabay

She also states that, “early contact with the baby, early establishment of breastfeeding and natural squeezing out of fluid from the lungs of the baby reduces chances of distress. The return to normal life and normal physical activity, too, is undoubtedly faster for the mother. Some issues that may present themselves with vaginal birth are tears in the vagina during the passage of the baby during birth which may need stitches. Without stitches, the tearing can negatively affect urine and bowel function which happens more frequently after vaginal birth. A vaginal birth may leave the mother with some pain in the perineum – the area between the vagina and anus.”

With regards to a cesarean delivery, the doctor feels, “at times, a cesarean delivery becomes necessary if the mother has a complication such as severe hypertension, twin or triplet pregnancy or placenta related complications. The complications can be a low lying placenta, abnormal position of the baby in utero such as breech or transverse lie, severe growth restriction in the baby wherein the baby may not be able to tolerate the stresses of a vaginal birth or the baby may be too big for the maternal pelvis!”

She also confirms that a cesarean may be unplanned, “especially in cases where there is a sudden dip in the baby’s heart rate during labor or if labour is prolonged beyond acceptable international guidelines for the various stages of labor. In such cases a well-planned cesarean birth does help saving both the mother and the baby in a well-equipped set up.”

But what are the disadvantages of a cesarean? “The disadvantages of a cesarean are increased length of hospital stay, discomfort in stitch line that may last weeks or months, higher risk of blood loss and infection, increased risk of a cesarean delivery in a future pregnancy as well as increased risk of placental abnormalities. These days though, with shorter surgical times, better suture materials and good antibiotics and stringent infection control practices in hospitals and good physiotherapy and lactation support post-delivery, we see patients getting mobilized as early as 6-12 hours post cesarean and seeking early discharge within 48-72 hours,” she replies.

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All in all, a lot depends on counseling, mental preparedness and how comfortable the mother to be is with both modalities of birthing. Every prospective parent should have a detailed discussion with their obstetrician regarding their pregnancy, possible complications and options for birthing and pain relief available. Both modalities have their distinct advantages and disadvantages in select cases, and a well conducted delivery in which both the mother and baby go home safely, is what every obstetrician aspires for! (IANS)

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Over 95% Women Feel That Abortion Was The Right Decision: Study

Over 95% women do not regret having an abortion says a new study

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According to a new study, over 95% women do not regret the decision of having an abortion. Pixabay

Researchers have found that even five years down the line after having an abortion, over 95 per cent of the women said it was the right decision for them.

Published in the journal Social Science & Medicine, the study found no evidence that women began to regret their decisions as years passed.

On the contrary, the women reported that both their positive and negative feelings about the abortion diminished over time. At five years, the overwhelming majority (84 per cent) had either positive feelings, or none at all.

“Even if they had difficulty making the decision initially, or if they felt their community would not approve, our research shows that the overwhelming majority of women who obtain abortions continue to believe it was the right decision,” said study researcher Corinne Rocca, Associate Professor at University of California in the US.

“This debunks the idea that most women suffer emotionally from having an abortion,” Rocca added.

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Most women suffer emotionally from having an abortion. Pixabay

For the findings, the researchers analysed data from the Turnaway Study, a five-year effort to understand the health and socioeconomic consequences for nearly 1,000 women who sought abortions in 21 states around the country.

The analysis included 667 participants who had abortions at the start of the study. The women were surveyed a week after they sought care and every six months thereafter, for a total of 11 times.

While women did not report regretting their decision, many did struggle initially to make it. Just over half said the decision to terminate their pregnancy was very difficult (27 per cent) or somewhat difficult (27 pe rcent), while the rest (46 percent) said it was not difficult.

About 70 per cent also reported feeling they would be stigmatised by their communities if people knew they had sought an abortion, with 29 per cent reporting low levels and 31 percent reporting high levels of community stigma. Those who struggled with their decisions or felt stigmatized were more likely to experience sadness, guilt and anger shortly after obtaining the abortion.

Over time, however, the number of women reporting these negative emotions declined dramatically, particularly in the first year after their abortion. This was also true for those who initially struggled with their decision.

And relief was the most prominent emotion reported by all groups at the end of the study — just as it was at every time point in the study.

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“This research goes further than previous studies, in that it follows women for longer, and was conducted on a larger sample from many different clinics throughout the US,” said Julia Steinberg from University of Maryland.

“It shows that women remain certain in their decision to get an abortion over time. These results clearly disprove claims that regret is likely after abortion,” Steinberg said. (IANS)