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If Baby Is Breech, Technology Might Help
Date:8/7/2009

if a breech baby is to be delivered vaginally and advises doctors to warn prospective parents of potential risks and have them sign a consent form saying that they're aware of the risks.

In a breech baby, according to the American Academy of Family Physicians, the infant's hip socket and thighbone are more likely to become separated during a vaginal delivery, and compression of the umbilical cord is also more likely, which can lead to brain damage from a lack of oxygen.

But Cesarean delivery is not risk-free either. Greater chances for bleeding and infection as well as longer hospital stays have been found for women who deliver by C-section.

But Copel said that the critical thing for a woman to do is to keep talking to her obstetrician/gynecologist. If the baby is found still to be breech late in pregnancy, she should discuss the options with her doctor at about 35 or 36 weeks, he said.

That way, he said, a decision can be made that's best for both mother and child.

More information

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists has more on breech presentation.



SOURCES: Susan Moray, certified professional midwife, Portland, Ore.; Joshua Copel, M.D., professor of obstetrics, gynecology and reproductive sciences, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Conn.; American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, Committee on Obstetric Practice, July 2006, committee opinion; March 28, 2008, BMJ, online; Aug. 3, 2006, BMJ; American Academy of Family Physicians (www.familydoctor.org)


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