Vaginal birth after a cesarean (VBAC) is a birth that is performed naturally rather than by surgery. There are many women who plan for a vaginal birth, but unfortunately, some complications may have lead to an emergency or even a planned C-section. This procedure involves making a surgical incision along the lower abdomen with a second incision being made in the uterus to deliver a baby safely. A cesarean can be really hard on a woman's body, but it can also be difficult emotionally as many moms hope for a successful vaginal birth. If you are pregnant and have had a C-section but would like to attempt a natural birth, call Women's Health at Valley View in Glenwood Springs, Basalt, or Silt, CO. Our highly trained and experienced OB/GYNs have been serving women of the Roaring Fork Valley area for many years and look forward to helping you grow your family.
Reasons for VBAC
There are various reasons to consider a VBAC:
- Shorter recovery time than cesarean
- Lower risk of surgical complications
- Decrease risk of scarring (which can impact future pregnancies)
- The opportunity to move forward with your personalized birth plan
"I love Dr. McCarty! She is smart and extremely personable and very approachable. I would definitely recommend her."- Anonymous / Healthgrades / Oct 03, 2019
"Truly BLESSED: - God has been so good to me, placing this woman in my path. She’s the first that took me seriously wo eye-rolls n the words “inconclusive” and “hypochondriac”!!!!!!!God alone "dropped her in my lap". I was at a Ladies' Bible Study n a woman there was talking about her Dr. n how pleased she was with her. I asked for the name:Dr. Katie Mang-Smith atWomen's Health at Valley-View Hospital in Glenwood Springs.She took the time to go over the paperwork / results from the multiple tests I've had done elsewhere since Jan 2017, multiple UAs, a cystoscopy, a CT scan, a pelvic ultrasound, and several pelvic exams,....) the problems I've been having that prompted me to have them, n my frustration of getting no answers / “inconclusive” results.The surgery was planned as "exploratory" to discover why n ended up being a major effort / undertaking of precision repair(s),for problems, some I suspected, some, no one had any clue!!!!!!!What was supposed to be 1 1/2 - 2 hours, was a 4 hour surgery!!!!!!!Grateful to God for His Provision!!!!!!!I had my surgery on Tuesday, 27 NOV, 18. It’s now Friday. Dr Mang-Smith came to my hospital room Tuesday afternoon to explain / discuss what she’d accomplished:After my previous partial hysterectomy (Colorado Springs 1998) and in the 20 years since,upon visual inspection, Dr. Mang-Smith discovered:Vaginal cuff, bladder, colon, ovaries and tubes all stuck together w a lot of scar tissue / adhesions,creating a large knotted lump / cluster of imperfectly, often painfully functioning organs, including confirmation of vaginal cuff that had come “unbuttoned” from the previous surgery.(Explains a LOT of on-going symptoms!!!!!!!)The pictures are shocking / stunning.She had to dissect it all to separate / get it apart.Once apart:Discovered a fistula n removed a portion of colon / repaired it.Removed (dead / atrophied / w cyst) ovaries n tubes.Put remaining items in their proper places, allowing them to freely move, naturally.Repaired the “unbuttoned” vaginal cuff.More incisions than planned to allow for tools -some glued, some sewn; a bit warm, but healing nicely.VERY sore -esp left side where biggest incisions are.On norco n ibuprofen for pain.On fluids, liquid diet / transition to soft / reg.Now home.Still a bit dizzy, n puffy from fluid, as well as some pain from gas, and other minor discomforts. Only a bit of nausea. A bit of fever yesterday, but all in all, vitals are good, n recovery seems to be going well.She called me yesterday and I told her how grateful I was -she’s basically saved my life. If all this had gone undiscovered (doesn’t show on any of the tests I’ve done!!!!!!!) for another 10-20 years, I’d never have survived it. (I’m 58 -would’ve had much more difficulty at 78!!!!!!!)Thank you SO very much, Dr. Mang-Smith, for your attentiveness, kindness, and skill!!!!!!! Recommending you will be one of the greatest privileges / pleasures of my life!!!!!!!Gratefully,Deborah Christine Garrett 🐝"- Anonymous / Vitals / Nov 30, 2018
"Dr. Joel Dickens was our doctor throughout my second pregnancy and birth of our daughter two years ago. He was great about answering any of our questions and addressing any concerns we had along the way. He never made me feel like any of my questions were unimportant or silly and I was never made to feel that my concerns were irrational. I am now in my last weeks of my third pregnancy and am much less anxious knowing this baby and I are in good hands with Dr. Dickens. We highly recommend Dr. Joel Dickens!"- Anonymous / Vitals / Nov 19, 2018
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A VBAC isn't for everyone as there are many factors to consider in order to move forward safely. At Women's Health at Valley View, we evaluate each patient case carefully while keeping the health of you and your baby at the forefront of our minds. Typically, ideal candidates do not have a high vertical uterine incision, no prior uterine rupture, or previous uterine surgeries (fibroid removal). Other factors that may prevent a VBAC is advanced age, 40+ week pregnancy, stalled labor, and obesity.
Risks of a VBAC
Although rare, the main risk involved with vaginal birth after a C-section is that the original cesarean incision may tear. This is known as a uterine tear, which can cause extreme blood loss that can be life-threatening for the mother and baby. On average, 60 – 80% of women have a successful vaginal delivery after a C-section.
What to Expect
The procedure process is the same for VBACs as it is with traditional vaginal births. When you go into labor, you'll move forward with your personalized birth plan and check into our care facility at Valley View Hospital. During your initial consultation with your OB/GYN, we will review all risks factors involved, but in order to provide the utmost safety for you and your baby, our medical team will closely monitor your baby's heart rate throughout your labor. We will also be prepared to perform an emergency C-section, if medically necessary.
Meet with an OB/GYN
If you are eligible and are considering a vaginal delivery after you have had a C-section, then we invite you to call Women's Health at Valley View in Glenwood Springs, CO. One of our board-certified OB/GYNs can sit down with you to listen to your concerns, answer any questions you may have, and review all the risks involved so you can move forward with the safest birth plan possible. We are here to guide you with leading medical care you can depend on.