Chilean women’s preferences regarding mode of delivery: which do they prefer and why?
Article first published online: 2 OCT 2006
BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics & Gynaecology
Volume 113, Issue 11, pages 1253–1258, November 2006
How to Cite
Angeja, A., Washington, A., Vargas, J., Gomez, R., Rojas, I. and Caughey, A. (2006), Chilean women’s preferences regarding mode of delivery: which do they prefer and why?. BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, 113: 1253–1258. doi: 10.1111/j.1471-0528.2006.01069.x
- Issue published online: 2 OCT 2006
- Article first published online: 2 OCT 2006
- Accepted 1 August 2006. Published OnlineEarly 2 October 2006.
- elective caesarean;
- mode of delivery;
- patient preferences
Objective Caesarean section rates in Chile are reported to be as high as 60% in some populations. The purpose of this study was to determine pregnant Chilean women’s preferences towards mode of delivery.
Design Interviewer-administered cross-sectional survey.
Setting Prenatal clinics in Santiago, Chile.
Population Pregnant women in Santiago, Chile.
Methods Of 180 women completing the questionnaire, 90 were interviewed at a private clinic (caesarean delivery rate 60%) and 90 were interviewed at a public clinic (cesarean delivery rate 22%). Data collected included demographics, preferred mode of delivery, and women’s attitudes towards vaginal and caesarean deliveries.
Main outcome measures Mode of delivery preferences, perceptions of mode of delivery measured on a 1–7 Likert scale.
Results The majority of women (77.8%) preferred vaginal delivery, 9.4% preferred caesarean section, and 12.8% had no preference. There was no statistical difference in preference between the public clinic (11% preferred caesarean) and the private clinic (8% preferred caesarean, P= 0.74). Overall, women preferring caesarean birth were slightly older than other groups (31.6 years, versus 28.4 years for women who preferred vaginal and 27.3 years for women who had no preference, P= 0.05), but there were otherwise no differences in parity, income, or education. On a scale of 1–7, women preferring caesarean birth rated vaginal birth as more painful, while women preferring vaginal birth rated it as less painful (5.8 versus 3.7, P= 0.003). Whether vaginal or caesarean, each group felt that their preferred mode of delivery was safer for their baby (P < 0.001).
Conclusions Chilean women do not prefer caesarean section to vaginal delivery, even in a practice setting where caesarean delivery is more prevalent. Thus, women’s preferences is unlikely to be the most significant factor driving the high caesarean rates in Chile.