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Vaginal Birth After Cesarean (VBAC): Am I a Candidate?

Jun 20, 2024
Vaginal Birth After Cesarean (VBAC): Am I a Candidate?
If you’d like to give birth vaginally next time, your past C-section doesn’t necessarily have to hold you back. Many women are good candidates for vaginal birth after cesarean (VBAC). Read on to find out whether it’s right for you.

About 32% of births are C-sections today. Some are planned far in advance and others happen in emergencies. No matter how your C-section happened, it doesn’t necessarily have to dictate your delivery method in the future. 

At Trusted Women’s Health Center in Kendall and Miami, Florida, our dedicated OB-GYN, Sidiq Aldabbagh, MD, and skilled team specialize in complex cases and high-risk births. Many of our patients choose a trial of labor after cesarean delivery (TOLAC), and most are successful in having a vaginal birth after cesarean (VBAC).

We strongly believe in each woman’s right to create the birth story she wants. We’re here to guide and support your planning. If you want to try for a VBAC, you need to know about candidacy. Read on to learn the factors that contribute to your eligibility for a VBAC.

There are many factors that go into the decision to try for a VBAC. We carefully review your prior deliveries, medical history, pregnancy timeline, and other factors to determine whether you’re a good VBAC candidate. 

Some of the major things to consider for VBAC candidates include:

C-section incision

The best candidates for VBAC have low transverse (side-to-side) incision or a low vertical incision. Women with high vertical incisions aren’t good candidates because of a higher risk of uterine rupture.

History of vaginal delivery

If you had a previous vaginal delivery (before your C-section), it increases your odds of success for a VBAC. However, if your first and only delivery was a C-section, you could still be a candidate for a VBAC.

Number of C-sections 

The lower the number of C-sections you’ve had in the past, the better your chance of a VBAC. Most women who have VBAC have only one or two C-sections in their past. 

Delivery plan

Your delivery plan especially where you plan to deliver and who will be there with you — plays a role in VBAC candidacy. All women attempting VBAC should plan to give birth in a safe facility with a trained OB-GYN like Dr. Aldabbagh at your side. Dr. Aldabbagh responds quickly to emergency situations and can perform a C-section if necessary.  

Induction or not 

Some women need labor induction. It’s possible to have a VBAC with labor induction, but doing so might increase the chances of uterine rupture. Dr. Aldabbagh explains which option is safest for you. However, even if you need to have a scheduled C-section, you might be a good candidate to try for a VBAC if you go into labor beforehand.

Your health status

Your health, both in terms of your pregnancy and general wellness, plays a role in VBAC candidacy. If you have pregnancy complications, for instance preeclampsia, Dr. Aldabbagh might recommend another C-section for your safety. Every situation is different, so he reviews your full medical and pregnancy history in detail.

These are some of the main things that we consider when you want to try for a VBAC. But there are many other things that may affect your VBAC plans, too. We work closely with you and do our very best to set you up for a successful VBAC while keeping you and your baby’s health first in mind.

Success of VBAC

If you’re a good candidate for VBAC, you have an excellent chance of getting the birth story you want. About 75% of women who attempt a VBAC are successful, so your chances are looking good. 

It all starts with good planning, and we’re here to help with that. Call Trusted Women’s Health Center at 786-360-4334 or click the online appointment tool to schedule your evaluation with our caring team now.