Living Well

Vaginal Birth after a C-Section: Can it work for you?

Louis Paul du Treil, M.D.
Vaginal Birth after a C-Section: Can it work for you?

If you have delivered a baby via cesarean section, you may think you can’t try a vaginal birth for your next child. However, about nine in 10 women who had C-sections are candidates for VBAC, or vaginal birth after cesarean.

What’s more, three-fourths of women who try VBAC succeed. Your odds of joining them improve if:

Your hospital is ready

Not every birthing center offers VBAC, but Touro Infirmary does. Your Touro medical team will monitor you closely and be ready to treat complications and perform another C-section if needed.

You have no other health problems

Some complications or conditions could make VBAC more dangerous, including diabetes, obesity, heart disease and placenta previa, when the placenta covers part of the cervix.

Your incision was positioned properly

Most C-sections are done with what doctors call a low transverse incision, or bikini cut. This means your surgeon made the cut horizontally and low on the uterus.

Woman laying on hospital bed with new born infant

Your baby’s in the right place

Babies in the head-down position have an easier time passing through the vaginal canal. If your baby is breech or transverse, meaning he or she is lying sideways, you might need another C-section.

The reasons you had a C-section the first time aren’t a factor

Some C-sections are needed for specific reasons specific to that pregnancy — breech births, multiples and babies with certain birth defects or problems during labor. If those issues don’t affect this pregnancy, VBAC may be a safe choice.

VBAC can speed recovery, reduce the risk for infection and increase odds of having more children in the future. But it is not right for everyone. Talk with your doctor to make the best decision for you.
For more tips on pregnancy and early parenting, view Touro’s Childbirth Education Calendar at

Dutreil, LouisLouis Paul du Treil, M.D. is Director of Maternal and Child Health at Touro Infirmary and a practicing OB/GYN with Crescent City Physicians, Inc. He earned his B.S. from Loyola University and attended the Louisiana State University School of Medicine. Dr. du Treil completed his OB/GYN internship and residency at the University of Florida College of Medicine, Gainesville. He is Board Certified by the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

>> Click here for details on Dr. du Treil’s practice.