Well­ness Arti­cles

Cae­sarean Babies Three Times More Likely to Die in First Month

A recent study released by the cen­tres for Dis­ease Con­trol, (CDC) states that babies born via Cae­sarean are much more likely to die than those born by nat­ural means. The story was reported by sev­eral news agen­cies includ­ing the Sep­tem­ber 7, 2006 United Press Inter­na­tional (UPI) and the Sep­tem­ber 8, 2006 News­day newspaper.

The study, first pub­lished in the Sep­tem­ber 2006 issue of the jour­nal, “Birth”, was the result of a very large study where researchers ana­lyzed 5.7 mil­lion birth and death records from 1998 to 2001. What was inter­est­ing about the find­ings is that researchers expected to find the increased death rate in Cae­sar­ian born babies being due to med­ical com­pli­ca­tions or con­di­tions that led to the usage of Cae­sarean deliv­ery in the first place. How­ever, after rul­ing out these fac­tors this study looked at elec­tive Cae­sarean pro­ce­dures and found that the death rate for chil­dren born by Cae­sarean when there was not med­ical neces­sity was almost three times the rate of those vagi­nally delivered.

Researchers then adjusted their find­ings for other fac­tors such as the mother’s age, race or eth­nic­ity, smok­ing and infant birth weight. Even tak­ing these fac­tors into account the death rate for babies born by Cae­sarean births was more than twice that of vagi­nal births.

The lead researcher, Mar­ian Mac­Dor­man from the CDC stated: “Neona­tal deaths are rare for low-​risk women is of the order of one death per 1,000 live births. But even after we adjusted for socioe­co­nomic and med­ical risk fac­tors, the dif­fer­ence per­sisted. These find­ings should be of con­cern for clin­i­cians and pol­i­cy­mak­ers who are observ­ing the rapid growth in the num­ber of pri­mary Cae­sare­ans to moth­ers with­out a med­ical indication.”

One of the co-​authors of the study, Michael Mol­loy, added, “When obste­tri­cians review this infor­ma­tion, per­haps it will pro­mote greater dis­cus­sion within the obstet­ri­cal com­mu­nity about the pros and cons of offer­ing Cae­sarean sec­tions for con­ve­nience and pro­mote more research into under­stand­ing why this increased risk persists.”

In the orig­i­nal study, one of the con­cerns that these find­ings raised is that “the per­cent­age of United States’ births deliv­ered by Cae­sarean sec­tion has increased rapidly in recent years, even for women con­sid­ered to be at low risk for a Cae­sarean sec­tion.” In the study’s con­clu­sions, and not­ing the dif­fer­ences between vagi­nal death rates and Cae­sar­i­ans, the authors cau­tion, “Under­stand­ing the causes of these dif­fer­en­tials is impor­tant, given the rapid growth in the num­ber of pri­mary Cae­sarean with­out a reported med­ical indication.

Ran­dom Article

The above is a head­line from a May 8, 2007, Reuters UK news story. The same story also appeared in arti­cles in USA

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