C-section rates in Minnesota vary dramatically, report shows

  • Article by: Maura Lerner , Star Tribune
  • Updated: February 20, 2013 - 10:42 AM

Minnesota report of first-time moms shows dramatic differences, raises questions.

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test0001Feb. 19, 13 3:43 PM

How many of these cesarean sections are elective? I don't know how common it is, but there are increasing numbers of women requesting primary (elective) cesarean sections.

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eman2001Feb. 19, 13 4:36 PM

Until there is tort reform, rates will continue to be high. Who wants to get sued for not doing enough?

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peterlaffertyFeb. 19, 13 4:38 PM

newsflash... you can't ELECT to have a c-section. it has to be deemed medically necessary.

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jload027Feb. 19, 13 5:13 PM

Peterlafferty - I have heard through different media sources over the years that a lot of New York women are choosing to have a c-section and are scheduling the procedure themselves. Either this is untrue or else it is pretty easy to convince one's doc to sign off on the procedure. Anyhow, I had my almost 12 lb son at Regions Hospital with no C-section and no drugs and they were great! The midwife later told me that if they had given me drugs that it would have slowed things down to much and they probably would've panicked and done a C-section, but instead they just let things progress naturally and it worked out. It was pure HE-- of course, but it's funny how quickly the mind blots that out afterwards!

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redkayakFeb. 20, 1311:59 AM

One problem with these statistics is that it pressures doctors to avoid c sections when c sections should be scheduled. After 24 hours of hard labor, they performed an emergency c section on me and almost lost my 9 pound son who was in the wrong position with the cord wrapped around his neck because of statistics. I'm still discusted that the doctor refused to do the c section before it was an emergency. If they had looked at the ultrasound they could easily have determined that this should have been done earlier. Healthy babies should not be put at risk because of statistics.

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annsypFeb. 20, 13 2:05 PM

When one of three births in the U.S. is by C-section, something is awry. Recently, Harvard Magazine did an in-depth article on this subject. The key to the C-section rate may be found in markedly different attitudes toward childbirth. The midwives interviewed saw it as a natural process that they could assist. The delivery room anesthesiologists described it as a "disaster waiting to happen." In a hospital context, every incentive favors resolving doubts in favor of a C-section: Fear of liability: in our litigious world, obstetricians are viewed as virtual guarantors of perfect babies. Economics: per the Harvard article, C-sections are twice as expensive as vaginal deliveries. If there's a third party payer in the wings to foot the bill, and any indiciation of risk, then why not? Convenience: both doctors' and parents'. It's easier to manage your life with a scheduled C-section rather than waiting for labor to start and progress in its own good time. While C-sections are certainly indicated in some cases, they are not risk-free. For the mother, they are major abdominal surgery, with all its attendant dangers. For babies, they lose the benefit to their respiratory systems of squeezing through the birth canal. P.S. to redkayak above: Do you have any basis for your statement that your doctor delayed doing a C-section "because of statistics"? What do you suggest, that studies of C-section rates not be done, or their results kept secret?

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marathongirlFeb. 21, 13 3:32 PM

"peterlafferty - newsflash... you can't ELECT to have a c-section. it has to be deemed medically necessary." - Newsflash, I'm assuming by the name you are a boy so maybe not in the know, but yes, you CAN choose to have a c-section even if it's not medically necessary. One of my friends had to fight to have a natural birth after her first had to come via emergency c-section.

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