C-section Rate is at an All-Time High

HealthDay News reports that the c-section rate in the U.S. has reached an all-time high. According to a new report from HealthGrades, 34 percent of births are now cesarean deliveries. The report based on birth data from 19 states found that the c-section rate rose by 7 percent between 2002 and 2009.

Doctors and patients have contributed to the increase in cesarean deliveries. Dr. Divya Cantor, author of the report, explained, "Doctors need to better understand when a c-section is called for.” She added, "Patients need to have a better understanding of c-sections and not go into it blindly."

Some reasons why c-section rates have increased may be due to an increase in pregnancy complications. Women are giving birth later in life, obesity and diabetes rates have increased, and multiple births have increased, possibly due to fertility treatments. However, other reasons for the increase were convenience to mom or doctor, pregnant women asking for c-sections, doctors’ willingness to perform them, and malpractice concerns. The report mentioned that common labor practices like inducing labor and the use of epidurals may be contributing to the increase in cesarean births as well.

For more details on this report see:
C-Section Rate in U.S. Climbs to All-Time High: Report