Having a prior uterine surgery increases the risk of uterine rupture. The relative risk is still low, but it’s there.

Other factors, like induction, can increase that risk.

But sometimes there is no “reason” for a uterine rupture other than a prior cesarean.

Uterine rupture stories illustrate that even though the risk is ~ 0.4% (among those with one prior low transverse cesarean in a spontaneously laboring VBAC), that small number impacts real parents and babies.

Sometimes, outcomes are good. Other times, not good. And many things impact how a uterine rupture plays out.

This specific uterine rupture survival story is an excellent example of two things.

One, birthing parents and professionals, learn the facts so you know the symptoms of uterine rupture and how they present differently than labor pain. (Shoulder pain is another sign that I have seen missed.)

A tell tale sign in this situation was the sudden, sharp pain that persisted between contractions. This is a well-documented sign of uterine rupture which should have prompted further review rather than suggesting the mother get an epidural.

Two, birthing parents, listen to your instincts. They are almost always right. Even if it’s your first labor, if you feel that something is wrong, keep saying what is happening until someone listens.

One mother’s uterine rupture story:

“I was not induced, I went to 41.4 weeks and naturally went into labor.

I labored for 4 hours and then suddenly had this sharp pain in my lower right abdomen that was so strong and continued through contractions- the nurses knew and shook it off (they just thought I was being a pain because I didn’t want an epidural.) I literally asked if there was a chance that I ruptured because I read someone else’s story on here about their rupture.

It finally became so intense I did ask for an epidural and thankfully I did because the next morning while still laboring, my daughters heart rate dropped and we rushed into emergency c section.

When they moved me from my bed to the operating table, I started bleeding out and when my OB cut into me, she informed me that I had ruptured.

She had never dealt with a rupture and it was clear. She kept saying she couldn’t get the baby out and I could tell she was a little frantic.

My baby busted through the corner of my last internal suture and that’s where I felt the pain between contractions (listen to your bodies ladies – you know when something is wrong and my nurses didn’t listen).

I literally started telling my husband to take care of the babies if I didn’t make it.

I know this is scary but it’s real. I’m not trying to scare anyone. I still support those who wish to have a VBAC.

What happened to me is RARE.

Thank God and all the stars that my baby made it out (my incision was cut larger) and that I did too. She is 100% healthy and happy and turning 2 in December ❤”

As a birth professional, your clients turn to you when they need information.

Providing them with emotional support and accurate information gives parents the foundation they need to make truly informed decisions.

If you would like confidently communicate the facts to your clients so they can make truly informed decisions, then join the VBAC Facts Membership for Professionals. It is the most comprehensive resource available to perinatal professionals who want to increase VBAC access in their community.


Jen Kamel

As an internationally recognized consumer advocate and Founder of VBAC Facts®, Jen helps perinatal professionals, and cesarean parents, achieve clarity on vaginal birth after cesarean (VBAC) through her educational courses for parents, online membership for professionals, continuing education trainings, and consulting services. She speaks at conferences across the US, presents Grand Rounds at hospitals, advises on midwifery laws and rules that limit VBAC access, educates legislators and policy makers, and serves as an expert witness and consultant in legal proceedings. She envisions a time when every pregnant person seeking VBAC has access to unbiased information, respectful providers, and community support, so they can plan the birth of their choosing in the setting they desire.

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Free Handout Debunks...

There is a bit of myth and mystery surrounding what the American College of OB/GYNs (ACOG) says about VBAC, so let’s get to the facts, straight from the mouth of ACOG via their latest VBAC guidelines.

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