Birth after a Previous Caesarean
If you have had one caesarean birth, you may be considering your options for future births. You can choose to have a vaginal birth or a caesarean birth, either choice is safe with different risks and benefits.
In considering your choices you will be invited to attend a Midwife led clinic or Consultant Antenatal Clinic where you will be asked about your medical history and about your previous pregnancies. They will want to know:
- the reason you had the caesarean birth and what happened – was it an emergency or planned (elective)?
- the type of cut that was made in your uterus (womb) - how you felt about your previous birth. Do you have any concerns?
- whether your current pregnancy has been straightforward or if there have been any problems or complications?
You will then be able to consider your chance of a successful vaginal birth, your personal wishes and future fertility plans when making a decision about vaginal birth or caesarean birth. If the caesarean section was performed in a different unit your medical notes may be requested so that this information can be used during the discussion.
Vaginal Birth After Caesarean (VBAC)
Vaginal Birth after Caesarean (VBAC) is the term used when a woman gives birth vaginally, having had a caesarean birth in the past. Vaginal birth includes birth assisted by forceps or ventouse.
Elective Repeat Caesarean Birth
An elective caesarean is a planned caesarean. The date is usually planned in advance, the caesarean birth usually happens in the seven days before your due date, unless there is a reason (related to you or your baby) why your baby needs to be born earlier.