Older Posts


Induction is wrong, wrong, wrong… wait, what?

Success and Failure Road Sign with dramatic clouds and sky.

I hear all the time how induction in VBAC is contraindicated. This is false. This is the kind of misinformation that materializes when we demonize all induction rather than specifying that elective inductions are not worth the increased risks.

It’s important to use clear, specific language when we talk about birth because there is a [...]

Evening primrose oil: “Don’t use it if you are pregnant?”


Many moms and midwives use evening primrose oil (EPO) for cervical ripening. So I was absolutely shocked at the complete lack of evidence on the effectiveness and safety of EPO among pregnant women. There is one study that examined the oral use EPO during pregnancy. It concluded EPO didn’t work as we expected it to and further, women who took EPO were more likely to experience a whole host of complications. Shockingly, there are no studies on the vaginal use of EPO during pregnancy. In short, there is insufficient clinical evidence documenting the risks and benefits of EPO and without that information, should pregnant women take it? [...]

Myth: VBACs should never be induced


Spontaneous labor is always preferable to induced or augmented labor but there are medical conditions that can necessitate the immediate birth of a baby. It’s nice for those women for whom vaginal birth is still an option to have a choice: gentle induction/ augmentation or repeat cesarean. Of course, informed consent reviewing the risks and benefits of their options is essential. Some women might be more comfortable scheduling a cesarean whereas others might want to give a gentle Pitocin and/or Foley catheter induction a go. [...]

Repeat cesarean due to 130/100 blood pressure?

A woman seeking VBAC currently has her 130/100 blood pressure under control with the help of medication, yet her OB is recommending a repeat cesarean. Jen collects and shares information and opinions from the Mayo Clinic, OBs, midwives, doulas, and moms including questions for the mom to ask of her OB. [...]

Confusing math misleads women on uterine rupture and mortality risk

VBAC Facts reviews a blog post that shares a study on VBAC along with statistics the blogger calculates, many of which misrepresents the risk of uterine rupture and infant mortality during a VBAC attempt demonstrating why it is important to not only know the source of the statistics, but also know that the blogger can do simple math. [...]

Myth: Induced unscarred mom as likely as VBAC mom to rupture

Fact or Myth

Update 1/20/12 – Someone who believed this birth myth to be true, told me that the source of this information was an OB from St. Louis who presented at the 2011 ICAN conference. I contacted ICAN and they said that the person must be referring to Dr. George Macones. Yet, no one on the ICAN [...]

An OB you like or who makes you comfortable isn’t enough

Many women do not interview OBs/midwives when selecting their VBAC care provider.  They either stay with the GYN who has been providing their well-woman care or the same OB who performed their cesarean because they like them.

Women they really believe that if they are good patients, if they are friendly, if they don’t [...]

“Pit to Distress” – A significant risk of hospital birth

There are two things women generally believe about OBs:

1. Their OB would never do anything to put them or their baby in harm’s way,

2. If their OB gives them a drug, or recommends a procedure, that’s only because the benefits outweigh the risks.

Unfortunately, both of those things are not always true.

Women [...]

“Pit to Distress”: Your Ticket to an “Emergency” Cesarean?

Last week I wrote about a hospital reduced it’s use of Pitocin and found that their emergency cesarean rate decreased.

Then today I run across this new term “Pit to Distress” at unnecesarean.com:

“Pitocin is used like candy in the OB world, and that’s one of the reasons for medical and legal risk,” says Carla [...]

Hospital’s Oxytocin Protocol Change Sharply Reduces Emergency C-Section Deliveries

This article published June 19, 2009 demonstrates one hospital’s experience when they changed their oxytocin (Pitocin) protocol.

I’ve included the entire article below and have emphasized what I consider to be the most interesting parts.

Hospital’s Oxytocin Protocol Change Sharply Reduces Emergency C-Section Deliveries By Betsy Bates Elsevier Global Medical News Conferences in Depth


If VBAC is reasonable, why does my OB say it is dangerous?

This is a question that I’ve heard a lot.

Here is the three second answer: VBACs got a bad rap in the 1990s before we understood the increased risk of rupture during an induced VBAC labor, especially with Cytotec.  Even if your OB is supportive, s/he may be under pressure from hospital administrators, or other [...]

I’m pregnant and want a VBAC, what do I do?

I recently received this comment.

Hi…thank you so much for your site! Very informative. I live in Glendale and I had a c-section last year with my first daughter. I went in to be induced even though I wasn’t looking forward to it. No contractions. No mucus plug. No water broken. I guess I just [...]