Having a prior uterine surgery increases the risk of uterine rupture. The relative risk is still low, but it’s there. Other factors can push that risk higher (such as induction.) 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 & babies.
Women who have had uterine ruptures and lost their babies have endured some of our greatest fears. But they are part of our community as well. When the VBAC Facts Community, a Facebook group, was opened to the public, we welcomed and embraced the parents who joined us after their loss. Often they felt like they were no longer part of the birth community. They didn’t know where they fit in. They felt isolated and yet they wanted to share their story. We had many loss moms as members and many parents who were planning VBACs who wanted to hear their stories.
“I have just seen so many women who have husbands who aren’t supportive because they don’t understand. My husband would love to help more men understand.”
A couple recently shared their VBA2C (vaginal birth after two cesareans) journey with me. It touched my heart. By the time I was done reading it, I had tears in my eyes.
Most women planning a VBA1C (vaginal birth after one cesarean) are aware of the risks of uterine rupture. However, women planning their first vaginal birth or VBA1C need the WHOLE picture so they can really work to prevent an unnecessary cesarean.
In an effort to bring the consumer perspective to the 2010 NIH VBAC Conference, Jennifer Kamel, Founder of VBAC Facts, asked women across America, “Why is the option of VBAC important to you?” This is what they said.