In The News

24 Sep 2011

Too Scared to Push - fear of childbirth increases caesarean rates

Most pregnant women worry about the thought of giving birth, but for some women this fear is more intense. These women may request a caesarean section to avoid having a vaginal birth, even though caesarean sections are more likely to lead to complications, for both women and their babies.

Several studies have shown that psychological support and counselling for these women may encourage them to opt for a vaginal birth. Counselling can halve the rates of caesarean section for these women, and can improve their experience of childbirth. However, we don’t know how caesarean rates of women who’ve had counselling compare to women without excessive fear of childbirth.

Researchers in Sweden looked at the records of 353 women who had received counselling for their fear of giving birth and 579 women without this fear.

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BMJ Group

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