Vaginal birth after cesarean
Keeping your delivery options open after C-section
Vaginal birth after cesarean (VBAC) refers to the practice in which a baby is delivered vaginally after a previous child had been born via a cesarean section (C-section). With medical advancements creating the freedom to choose delivery preference, VBACs are becoming more common.
If you are interested in a VBAC, Sharp Chula Vista Medical Center, Sharp Grossmont Hospital and Sharp Mary Birch Hospital for Women & Newborns can offer you that choice.
How to have your VBAC at Sharp
Is a VBAC right for you?
There are certain factors that could prevent you from having a VBAC. Because each woman and each pregnancy is different, it is important that you discuss your options with your doctor and express your wishes ahead of time.
In order for your doctor to consider VBAC as a viable delivery option, both you and the hospital where you plan to deliver must meet certain requirements, including:
No medical indication for a C-section in this pregnancy
No more than two low, side-to-side uterine scars from previous C-sections
No scarring on the lower, thinner part of your uterus
The hospital where you plan on delivering must have the staff, tools and an operating room ready to perform an emergency C-section at a moment's notice
VBAC is still considered to be safe if you are over 35 years old, have a large fetus or are pregnant for more than 40 weeks, but these three factors do lower the chance of being able to deliver vaginally.
What are the benefits of VBAC?
Lower risk of infection
A more active role for you and your birthing partner in the birth of your child
A shorter hospital stay and recovery time
Avoiding another scar on your uterus, which is important if you are planning to become pregnant again in the future
Less pain after delivery
Able to breastfeed sooner after a vaginal birth compared to a C-section
What are the risks of VBAC?
Two primary risks are associated with attempting a VBAC. First is the chance of infection, which increases should an emergency C-section take place. The second and more serious risk is if a C-section scar bursts open during labor, which is rare.
Only the best care for you and your baby
Delivering the most babies in California each year, we are dedicated to providing exemplary services, caregivers and accommodations to women and their newborns. Along with state-of-the-art labor and delivery suites and high-level neonatal intensive care units (NICUs), we offer family-centered care where there is room for a birth partner to stay each night.
We support your birthing choices and provide a personalized experience to suit your preferences. We are here to help when you need it and have support groups and classes available before, during and after delivery. No matter where you live or work in San Diego, our compassionate, expert pregnancy and childbirth care is close by.