From childhood, Jennifer Kamel has held a special interest in childbirth and even considered becoming an obstetrician. However, plans changed when she fell in love with computers and spreadsheets. After a challenging career as a commercial real estate research manager performing demographic research and analysis, she retired in 2004 upon her daughter’s birth. It was at this time that she turned her attention back to her original passion but with a new twist: birth after cesarean.
She spent the next couple years wading through the research on vaginal birth after cesarean and frustration ensued. While she found a plethora of information available on the internet, it wasn’t what she was looking for. She wanted recent studies and analysis. She wanted statistics that were properly cited so she could easily read the original medical studies. She wanted to know the specific rates of complications. She wanted to know how many moms and babies died. She wanted to know how many VBACs were successful and for those that weren’t, what were the outcomes? She wanted to understand the risks of repeat cesareans. She had heard talk about VBAC being illegal in some states or counties. Or that some women opted to have home VBACs. What did that entail?
But there was no one place where she could get all this information. How was she to make this huge medical decision when all the information she wanted was scattered across the internet or deep within medical studies which she had no idea how to access? On top of all that, while her OB said VBAC was a possibility, whenever she mentioned it to anyone, the overall tone was that VBAC was too risky and dangerous and why not just have another cesarean? After all, as she heard time and time again, they are so easy and convenient.
Over the years, she slowly and meticulously collected information. And after her son’s victorious birth in 2007, a home VBAC, she created VBACFACTS.com in order to make the studies she had compiled, and the analyses she performed, easily accessible to others.
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