Choosing a C-Section May Triple Your Baby's Chance of Death

As an increasing number of healthy moms opt for a Caesarean (C-section) birth, so will infant mortality rates, according to a new study.

Although this higher risk of death among babies had been noteworthy since America started keeping track of Caesarean births in 1989, scientists had assumed the cause was related to something other than the method of delivery. That's why researchers reviewed data on some 6 million births from American mothers, all of whom chose a C-section although they had no risk of complications.

The mortality rate among C-section babies in their first 28 days in life almost tripled versus those delivered naturally. Even though the numbers appear small -- almost 2 deaths per 1,000 Caesarean births -- are you willing to take this risk for the sake of convenience?

Some things you can do to make your pregnancy as smooth as possible and reduce your chances of a C-section:

Birth, Issues in Perinatal Care, Vol. 33, No. 3, September 2006: 175

MSNBC September 14, 2006

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