At What Age Should You Consider Having a VBAC?
If you've previously had a C-section and are under 40, you may be contemplating the option of a vaginal birth for your next pregnancy. Your next step could be exploring the possibility of VBAC (Vaginal Birth After Cesarean). Dr. Samantha Schoenhaus at Essential Women's Health Associates in Las Vegas and Henderson, NV, specializes in advising women on the viability of a VBAC based on their age, medical history, and current condition.
What is a VBAC?
VBAC is an option that allows women who have previously undergone a C-section to try for a vaginal birth in subsequent pregnancies. There are several benefits to opting for a VBAC:
- Shorter recovery time compared to a C-section
- Lower risk of infection
- No abdominal surgery
- Enhanced bonding experience with the baby right after birth
Would a VBAC be right for you?
The first step in considering a VBAC is to evaluate whether or not you're a suitable candidate. Dr. Schoenhaus and her team will consider several factors, including age, the reason for your previous C-section, and the time elapsed. Generally speaking, the ideal candidate for a VBAC:
- Is younger than 40 years old
- Has had at least 18 – 24 months since their last C-section
- Had a previous C-section for a reason that is unlikely to recur in this pregnancy
What are the risks of VBAC for women over the age of 40?
It's essential to understand that while VBACs can offer several advantages, they can also come with risks — especially for women over 40. The older you are, the higher the chances of complications during any pregnancy, not just a VBAC. These risks can include:
- Higher likelihood of needing an emergency C-section
- Increased risk of uterine rupture
- Greater probability of fetal distress
Because of these elevated risks, Dr. Schoenhaus strongly advises against VBAC for women over 40 and recommends alternative birth methods.
How can you prepare for a VBAC?
First, consult with healthcare providers like Dr. Schoenhaus to determine your suitability for VBAC. Review your medical history and go through tests to ensure you and your baby are in good health. Second, consider opting for childbirth classes focusing on VBAC to gain insights and tips. Also, having a solid support system can significantly impact your VBAC experience.
Explore your options for VBAC in Las Vegas
Considering VBAC is a significant decision that should be made with all the available facts and expert medical advice. If you're thinking about a VBAC, schedule a consultation with Dr. Samantha Schoenhaus at Essential Women's Health Associates in Las Vegas or Henderson, NV, to explore your options and make an informed choice.