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STUDY: C Section Effects A Womens Ability to Conceive Again.
JOURNAL: Human Reproduction 2002;17
AUTHORS: Dr. Deirdre Murphy
ABSTRACT: Women who give birth by caesarean section take longer on average to become pregnant again, according to the results of a large British study released on Tuesday.
COMMENTARY: After analyzing data from more than 14,500 women, Dr. Deirdre Murphy from the University of Bristol and others found that about one in eight women who have a C-section take more than a year to become pregnant again, compared with 1 in 12 of those who deliver vaginally.
The study accounted for other factors that might have reduced fertility, including the ages of both mother and father, how long they had lived together, whether oral contraceptives had previously been used, smoking and drinking and ethnic background.
It also eliminated women who decided not to have another child after caesarean, by only looking at women who actually did become pregnant again.
The increased difficulty in conceiving remained significant after taking these factors into consideration, the researchers report in the July issue of Human Reproduction.
For some women, a caesarean is a necessity to deliver the baby safely. On other occasions the decision may not be as clear-cut. We need more research into the long-term effects of all methods of delivery, so that doctors and midwives are better equipped to help women make informed decisions.