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J Obstet Gynaecol. 2009 Apr;29(3):212-6. doi: 10.1080/01443610902735785.

Delivery after caesarean section: consultant obstetricians' professional advice and personal preferences.

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John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford, UK.


The objective of this study was to determine how obstetricians would wish to be managed in their own pregnancy and their advice to patients delivering after a caesarean section. A questionnaire was sent to 219 consultant obstetricians in two large UK medical deaneries investigating their personal preferences for delivery and management of spontaneous, augmented and induced labour after a caesarean section and how they advise their patients related to the indication for the previous caesarean section. Responses were analysed according to age and gender. The questionnaire yielded a 68% response rate. None would counsel against labour unless there were contraindications. The majority would recommend labour for all indications for the previous caesarean section, although personal preferences were lower (p<0.04): 56% would recommend labour to their patients after a failed instrumental delivery, but only 36% would personally choose that option (p<0.002). Female obstetricians would contemplate and recommend labour more readily than males. Labour augmentation and induction was more frequently recommended (66% and 57%, respectively) than opted for personally (57% and 52%). Reluctance for labour augmentation and induction was greatest among younger consultants. While the majority of consultants favour labour for themselves and recommend this for their patients, it was reassuring to note that patients are encouraged to make the final decision. Informed patient choice is paramount and it is therefore important that full information about risks and benefits is available.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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