Birthing Misconceptions

08

If the baby is in the breech position, I have to have a cesarean

Until recently many women carrying babies in the breech position were able to have the choice of trying a normal birth. In the early 1990′s medical practice changed in many countries, including Canada, following a large international study that suggested vaginal delivery of a breech baby was unsafe. Cesarean was then recommended for all breech babies. Since then further study on long term outcomes, and the experience of hospitals that continued to provide vaginal breech birth (mainly in Europe), have shown that carefully selected women who are followed closely in labour can successfully and safely deliver their babies breech. The Best Birth Clinic at BC Women’s counsels women with breech babies who may wish to try to turn their baby to the head down position (this is called an external cephalic version, or ECV). If this is unsuccessful then eligible women may be able to try for a vaginal breech birth. Referrals to the best birth clinic can be made through your care provider, or you can call the clinic for more information.