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A woman is five to seven times more likely to die from a cesarean delivery than from a vaginal delivery.
A woman having a repeat C-section is twice as likely to die during delivery.
Twice as many women require rehospitalization after a C-section than after a vaginal birth.
Having a C-section means higher rates of infertility, ectopic pregnancy, and potentially severe placental problems in future pregnancies.
Babies born after an elective cesarean delivery (i.e., when labor has not yet begun) are four times more likely to develop persistent pulmonary hypertension, a potentially life-threatening condition.
Between one and two babies of every hundred delivered by C-section will be accidentally cut during the surgery.3
The US is tied for second-to-last place with Hungary, Malta, Poland, and Slovakia for neonatal mortality in the industrialized world.4
Babies born via C-section are at high risk for not receiving the benefits of breastfeeding.5
The risk of death to a newborn delivered by C-section to a low-risk woman is 1.77 deaths to 1,000 live births. The risk of death to a newborn delivered vaginally to a low-risk woman is only 0.62 per 1,000 live births.6