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Obstet Gynecol. 2003 Apr;101(4):690-6.

Elective cesarean delivery for term breech.

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  • 1Department of Obstetrics, Rigshospitalet, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark.



To compare the maternal complications of elective cesarean delivery for breech at term with those after vaginal or emergency cesarean delivery.


We conducted a population-based, retrospective cohort study of 15441 primiparas who delivered singleton breech at term. Information was obtained from the Danish Medical Birth Register, the Register of Death Causes, and the Denmark Patient Register.


Elective cesarean delivery was associated with lower rates of puerperal fever and pelvic infection (relative risk [RR] 0.81; 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.70, 0.92), hemorrhage and anemia (RR 0.91; 95% CI 0.84, 0.97), and operations for wound infection (RR 0.69; 95% CI 0.57, 0.83) than emergency cesarean delivery. There was a higher rate of puerperal fever and pelvic infection (RR 1.20; 95% CI 1.11, 1.25) than for vaginal delivery. Thromboembolic disease occurred in 0.1% of women with cesarean delivery, and anal sphincter rupture occurred in 1.7% of women with vaginal delivery. Elective cesarean delivery was not associated with subsequent ectopic pregnancy, miscarriage, placental complications, uterine rupture, or adverse neonatal outcome. Women with elective cesarean delivery were more often delivered by elective cesarean in their second pregnancy, compared with women delivered vaginally (RR 1.25; 95% CI 1.21, 1.29). Elective cesarean delivery was associated with a lower rate of a subsequent delivery during the study period and a longer mean delivery interval than for vaginal delivery.


Elective cesarean delivery for term breech carries a low risk of severe maternal complications.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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