What is VBAC?
Would you like to deliver your next baby vaginally after having an emergency C-section the first time? Did your birth plan go out the window when it was actually time for your baby to come into this world for unforeseen circumstances? Vaginal birth after a cesarean (VBAC) is a birthing option that progresses naturally rather than forcing a birth via surgery.
Being forced to have a C-section to keep you and your baby safe may be physically and emotionally hard on your body and mind when you were hoping for a natural, vaginal birth. At Essential Women's Health Associates in Las Vegas or Henderson, NV, our highly trained and experienced OBGYNs can consult with you about having a VBAC delivery for your subsequent pregnancy. Our medical team and practitioners all look forward to helping you grow your family with a personalized birth plan you strive to achieve.
What Are the Benefits of a VBAC?
If you had a C-section delivery for a previous child but don’t want to repeat that surgery, a VBAC performed by the experienced professionals at Essential Women's Health Associates is an ideal option. Benefits of this method of childbirth include:
- Shorter recovery time than a C-section
- No surgery
- Decreased likelihood of scarring, infection, and placental issues
- Recovery time is usually shorter with a vaginal birth
- Moving forward with a personalized birth plan
- Less blood loss
- A better option for those who want additional pregnancies in the future
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Who is a candidate for VBAC?
Many women would like the opportunity to have their next baby through the vaginal canal. The good news is that there are great reasons to try for a VBAC. When you have your baby vaginally, there are no abdominal surgical incisions to recover from and you heal faster. Surgery complications usually outweigh the risks of vaginal birth. There will be no surgical scar across your abdomen. It can also be a great indicator that an additional pregnancy after a VBAC could also be repeated. We do not recommend a VBAC for pregnant women over the age of 40, are obese, have a high vertical uterine incision from previous surgery, or have a history of uterine fibroids or uterine rupture.
WHat are the Risks of a VBAC?
We do want you to know that risks are rare when it comes to having your baby through the birth canal instead of having the baby taken out surgically. You may risk having a uterine tear and too much blood loss. If the birth plan to have your baby vaginally does not go as planned, then we will most likely schedule you for an emergency C-section.
Other considerations about VBACs
When we revert back to a C-section to bring your baby into this world, this will probably be because it was no longer safe for your baby to remain in your womb. By monitoring your baby's heart rate, we will be able to tell if he or she is in distress at any point during your labor. Other reasons we will perform a C-section are the following:
- Your labor is stalled
- Your cervix will not dilate appropriately
- Your baby or babies are not in the right position (breech) and will not move
- The umbilical cord is not where it is supposed to be
- It is not safe for your baby to be born vaginally
- Your OBGYN finds a growth or a fibroid blocking the birth canal
- You have an outbreak of genital herpes or other sexually transmitted infections
- Your health starts to decline during labor
- Your baby has a medical condition where a vaginal birth may be damaging
This list is not all-inclusive as to all the reasons why we move forward with C-section instead of waiting it out to deliver vaginally.
What To Expect After A VBAC
Recovery after a VBAC is much the same as recovery after a regular vaginal birth. You and your new baby will typically recuperate for 1 – 2 days in the hospital under supervision. As you begin your recovery after you go home, you may experience vaginal soreness, discharge or spotting, occasional contractions, incontinence, hemorrhoids, breast tenderness, skin changes, hair loss, and mood swings. These are all normal and expected after a vaginal birth because of the strain on the vagina, pelvic region, and the body in general coupled with hormonal changes. If you have heavy bleeding that does not stop or experience intense pain, you should contact your doctor. Most new mothers will begin to feel normal again in about 6 – 8 weeks and be able to return to regular activities; however, for some it may take longer and you should still take it easy and avoid lifting heavy objects. Most doctors will schedule a postpartum check-up within 12 weeks of a VBAC.
Is it safe to have a vaginal birth after a cesarean?
VBAC is not necessarily for everyone. Some medical professionals recommend women who have had an emergency C-section avoid vaginal delivery in the future. The experienced providers at Essential Women's Health Associates can make recommendations about vaginal birth based on your health and goals. Our goal is to make sure your pregnancy and delivery are as safe as possible.
What are the benefits of a VBAC?
The benefits of VBAC compared with C-sections include faster recovery times and no abdominal surgery, which means less blood loss and a reduced risk of complications. Las Vegas or Henderson, NV, patients who choose vaginal delivery over C-section may also benefit from shorter hospitalizations and lower health care costs.
What questions should I ask about vaginal birth after a cesarean?
We want to make sure patients are fully informed about their options before moving forward with a VBAC. It's important to be transparent about your medical history when discussing your options. Feel free to ask questions like:
- What is the likelihood of a successful vaginal birth?
- How will labor and delivery be managed if problems arise during labor or delivery?
- Are there any medical conditions that would prevent me from having a successful VBAC?
Can I have a VBAC if I've had more than one C-section?
The possibility of a VBAC after multiple C-sections is something that needs careful evaluation. While having multiple cesarean deliveries can increase certain risks, it doesn't automatically disqualify you from attempting a VBAC. At Essential Women's Health Associates, our providers will assess your individual circumstances, including the type and number of previous C-sections, to determine if a VBAC is a safe option for you.
How long should I wait after a C-section before attempting a VBAC?
Generally, it's recommended to wait at least 18-24 months after a cesarean before attempting vaginal birth. This waiting period allows your body adequate time to heal and reduces the risk of complications.
What are the risks associated with a VBAC?
While VBACs are successful for many women, there are risks involved, similar to any labor and delivery process. These can include uterine rupture, which is a rare but serious complication, and the potential need for an emergency C-section if complications arise during labor. Our experienced team at Essential Women's Health Associates is dedicated to discussing all potential risks and benefits with you, ensuring you make an informed decision about your birth plan.
There's A chance for VBAC
Not every woman has to have Cesarean delivery just because the first one did not go as planned. Our OBGYNs may birth your baby vaginally in a VBAC delivery. Give us a call at Essential Women's Health Associates in Las Vegas or Henderson, NV to see if you qualify to have your baby the way you want the birth of your baby to go this time around.
Can I Have a VBAC if I am Obese?
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At What Age Should You Consider Having a VBAC?
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Should I Be a Certain Weight to Have a VBAC?
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How Soon After My Last Birth Can I Have a VBAC Delivery?
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