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Early C-section may cause complications, possible birth injury

One of every three children is delivered via Cesarean section in the United States today, making a C-section one of the most commonly performed surgeries in the country. Lately, there has been a growing trend of C-section deliveries performed earlier than at the recommended birthing time. Many people do not understand that this procedure could result in a birth injury and possibly cause irreparable damage to both the child and the mother.

Mothers and health care providers in New York should pay close attention to a recent recommendation of the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. ACOG recommends that providers deny requests for early C-sections before 39 weeks of pregnancy. Babies continually mature and develop up until the 40th week; children delivered before the 39th week of gestation are more likely to have developmental delays and respiratory ailments. They are also more likely to end up in intensive care.

Last year, a study of New York City school children concluded that those children born at 41 weeks did better in reading and math compared with children born at less than 37 weeks. Additionally, if the mother's baby is delivered early, she risks potential complications like placental abruptions and uterine rupture, which could cause birth injuries in subsequent deliveries. Also, the mother is at risk for infection and breastfeeding problems.

Mothers and their children who have sustained injuries during the birthing process because of suspected negligence by a healthcare provider or hospital -- or in an instance where the mother was coerced into a procedure that she did not agree to -- may be eligible for compensation. A knowledgeable legal professional can assess the situation and make appropriate recommendations.

Source: Med City News, "One hospital took a stand on elective C-sections 5 years ago. Now everyone should follow it," Bernhard Blythe, Mar. 24, 2013