April is Cesarean Section Awareness Month. Last year, over 1 million c-sections were performed in the United States. The c-section is now, sadly, the most common surgery performed in the U.S.
The hundreds of thousands of unnecessary c-sections have been shown to have no benefit on maternal-child outcomes, while putting an additional strain on our already overburdened medical and insurance industries.
To help fight the growing casual attitude toward the cesarean, we ask you please consider forwarding this bulletin to your friends, neighbors and relatives. A big thank you to ICAN member Sara Gammel for creating and sharing this email with us.
A cesarean is now the most common major operation performed in America.
The CDC reports:
- The National Cesarean rate for 2004 is 29.1%
- The rate is up from 27.6% in 2003
- Iowa's 2004 Cesarean rate is 26.8%, up 3.75% from 2003
- U.S. cesareans have risen 40% since 1996
- First-time cesareans are at an historical high of 20.6%
- VBAC rates fell to 9.2%, even though studies show that over 70% of mothers can give birth vaginally after a cesarean
- Since 1996, the VBAC rate in the U.S. has plummeted 67%.
More than 300 hospitals across the country, including over 30 hospitals in Iowa, have banned vaginal birth after cesarean (VBAC) based on cost concerns & fears over liability.
The United States lags far behind other industrialized countries in maternal-child health outcomes. A new report by the World Health Organization published in the Lancet identifies complications from cesarean surgery and anesthesia as the leading causes of maternal death in developed countries, including the United States.
The International Cesarean Awareness Network is a non-profit organization whose mission is to improve maternal-child health by preventing unnecessary cesareans through education, providing support for cesarean recovery and promoting Vaginal Birth After Cesarean (VBAC).
Consumer Reports Questions Cesarean Frequency
Consumer Reports has named cesarean section number three on its list of “12 Surgeries You May Be Better Off Without.” The recommendation, based on research at the non-profit Rand Corporation, encourages consumers to “check out safer alternatives” before having any of the 12 listed “invasive procedures.” See http://www.consumerreports.org/mg/free-highlights/manage-your-health/needless_surgeries.htm