Finally, mode of birth varied again in women according to migration status and ethnicity, with multiparous immigrant women who had lived in the UK for more than 5 years at an increased risk of emergency caesarean section compared to their UK or Ireland born counterparts.
Moreover, in comparison to white women, primiparous black women were less likely to have an instrumental vaginal birth and multiparous Pakistani and Bangladeshi women were less likely to have a planned or emergency CS.
Holly Essex, Research Fellow at the Department of Health Sciences, University of York and lead author of the study, said:
"Our results show that socio-demographic characteristics of women in the UK can independently predict mode of birth.
"In this country there are significant variations in rates of CS between maternity units in different geographical areas and this research goes to show that it could be due in part to the characteristics of the population they serve.
"We found that first-time mothers in lower social class bands were more likely to have an instrumental vaginal birth and a planned CS, which counters other studies showing women in more deprived areas are less likely to have planned CS births. Our study used individual-level rather than area-level measures of socio-economic status, and controlled for a larger range of factors than any other study of this type has been able to before.
"Further research is needed to establish to what extent socio-demographic differences in mode of birth are a reflection of the attitudes and behaviours of women, or health professionals, or whether they reflect deeper health differences among these women."
Aris Papageorghiou, BJOG Scientific Editor, added:
"The large scale o
|Contact: Caitlin Walsh|