Women's experiences and preferences following Caesarean birth
Article first published online: 6 DEC 2004
Australian and New Zealand Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology
Volume 44, Issue 6, pages 521–524, December 2004
How to Cite
DODD, J., PEARCE, E. and CROWTHER, C. (2004), Women's experiences and preferences following Caesarean birth. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, 44: 521–524. doi: 10.1111/j.1479-828X.2004.00300.x
- Issue published online: 6 DEC 2004
- Article first published online: 6 DEC 2004
- Received 23 January 2004; accepted 15 June 2004.
- Caesarean birth;
- experiences after Caesarean;
- preferences after Caesarean
Aims: To seek women's views on their planned mode of birth in a subsequent pregnancy when they had a single prior Caesarean birth in the immediately preceding pregnancy.
Methods: This study was conducted at the Women's and Children's Hospital, Adelaide. Using a hospital maintained database, women were identified based on who had given birth by primary Caesarean section between December 2002 and June 2003 to a live born infant. The women were sent a questionnaire to assess their experiences related to their Caesarean birth and their plans for mode of birth in any subsequent pregnancy.
Results: A total of 319 eligible women were identified from the database and sent a questionnaire, with responses obtained from 208 women (65.2%). Most women were satisfied with their birth experience with a mean satisfaction score of 6.3 (± 2.8). The most common response when women were asked to indicate the aspects of their birth experience that they liked was those caring for them (153 women; 48%), followed by the reassurance provided about the health of their baby (106 women; 33%) and their own health (88 women; 28%). One fifth of women (63 women; 20%) indicated that they were glad that they had experienced labour. Eighty-five women (41%) indicated that they would in future plan for a vaginal birth, 48 women (23%) would plan for Caesarean section, and 72 women (35%) were unsure.
Conclusions: A proportion of women have a strong preference for mode of birth in a subsequent pregnancy, which is established within 6 months of the woman's birth experience.