Just before babies enter the world crying, they will transfer to an ideal position that places their head closer to the birth canal. Unfortunately, this does not happen all the time, and instead of the head, the baby’s feet or buttocks will be closer to the birth canal instead. This is called a breech birth. To give you a better understanding about this condition, visit this website.
Breech babies are rather common, occurring in 4 percent of all births of full gestation period. There are namely three different types of breech births:
1. Complete breech
2. Frank breech
3. Footling breech
Given the complications and risks involved in breech births, most obstetricians do not recommend a vaginal birth for breech babies, unless if the following conditions are met:
- The labor is uneventful and the cervix has widen adequately as the baby descended.
- The pregnancy has attained full-term and the breech baby is in the frank breech position.
- The baby’s heart rate is steady and does not exhibit any signs of distress.
- The baby’s size is not too large or the mother’s pelvis is not too small for the safe passage of the baby via the birth canal.
- Anesthesia and a cesarean intervention are both available on immediate need.
Breech Baby Birth Defects from a Vaginal Delivery
In general, breech pregnancies aren’t dangerous until it’s time for the baby to be born. With breech deliveries, although rare, there are cases of breech baby birth defects.
As the breech baby passes through the birth canal, the baby’s head is the last hurdle in the delivery, and often forceps are utilized to assist the baby’s head out of the vagina. The use of forceps can potentially leave some scars as birth defects.
Other potential risks include cord prolapse, during which the umbilical cord is tightened as the baby passes through the birth canal, decreasing the transport of oxygen and blood to the baby. Although the rate of heartbeat of the baby is electronically monitored throughout the entire length of the labor, in a vaginal breech birth, this could cause distress to the baby. Hence, midwives and obstetricians usually recommend a cesarean intervention for breech babies, especially when the pregnancy is not full-term.