Vaginal Birth After Cesarean (VBAC)

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What is a VBAC?

A Vaginal Birth After Cesarean is commonly referred to as a VBAC. 

Am I a candidate for a VBAC?

There are many reasons we may recommend a vaginal birth after a cesarean, but each case should be carefully evaluated by your physician or midwife and discussed with you to determine the safest and healthiest birth plan for both you and your baby.

Some factors that are taken into consideration for a VBAC are:

  • Number of previous c-sections 
  • The reason for previous c-section(s)
  • The type of incision used in previous c-section(s)
  • History of prior uterine rupture
  • A pregnancy condition which makes a vaginal delivery higher risk
  • Future deliveries - Multiple cesarean deliveries can pose additional potential risks in which case a VBAC would be the preferred choice if possible

What is a trial of labor after cesarean delivery (TOLAC)?

If you and your physician or midwife agree that a VBAC is the right birth plan, a trial of labor will be established to allow the mother to attempt to deliver vaginally. It is important to keep in mind that at any time during the pregnancy or delivery this plan can change and a cesarean delivery may be recommended. 

What are the benefits of a VBAC?

A vaginal birth is always the plan of choice as long as this can be achieved safely. We always encourage patients that are good candidates for a VBAC to allow for a TOLAC. Here are a few reasons why:

  • Shorter recovery
  • Lower risk of infection
  • Less scar tissue which is important if you plan to add to your family in the future
  • A more active role for you and your partner during the birth of your child

What are the risks involved with a VBAC?

The biggest risk with a VBAC is a uterine abruption. Approximately 5 in 1,000 VBACs result in a uterine rupture. Although a low occurrence, a uterine rupture is quite serious and can lead to severe complications for both the mother and her unborn child that require immediate surgical intervention. This is why it is important to have this discussion with your provider of choice to determine whether or not a VBAC is the right choice for you. 

Here at Greenville Ob/Gyn, we strive to meet the needs of each patient's ideal birth plan. We truly want you to cherish each and every moment. The health and safety of both mom and baby are paramount concerns, and any recommendation we make is based first and foremost on a healthy and successful birth. 

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