C-Sections Not The Safest Option for Moms with Pelvic Girdle Pain


With Caesarean section rates on the rise all over the world—thanks in large part to requests for C-sections without any medical reason—Norwegian researchers looked into whether there was a relationship with the mode of delivery in childbirth and the persistence of pelvic girdle pain six months after delivery. What they found was that C-sections increased the risk of developing persistent pelvic girdle pain following delivery compared to vaginal delivery.

Severe pelvic girdle syndrome is defined as severe pain over the frontal part of the pelvis and on both sides of the rear part of the pelvis.

Said lead study author Elisabeth K. Bjelland, a postdoctoral researcher at the Division of Mental Health within the Norwegian Institute of Public Health.

"Some women with severe pelvic girdle pain might fear that a vaginal delivery will be too difficult or painful, or will worsen the condition after delivery - even though scientific evidence is lacking."

Study Details

-- Participants included 10,400 women in the Norwegian Mother and Child Cohort Study who had reported pelvic girdle syndrome in pregnancy week 30.
-- Data was collected from questionnaires from weeks 17 and 30 of gestation and six months after delivery.
-- Almost 80% of women had unassisted vaginal deliveries; 6.7% had instrumental vaginal deliveries; 7.2% had emergency C-sections; 6.2% had planned C-sections. .

Study Findings

According to their findings, planned C-sections were associated with a 2 to 3 times increased risk of severe pelvic girdle syndrome six months after delivery. On top of that, women who had instrumental vaginal deliveries were also at increased risk of developing the syndrome.

Said Bjelland:

"Previous studies have reported that patients with prolonged or severe pain are at increased risk of chronic pain after surgery. One explanation may be that pain influences the central nervous system in such a way that the pain inhibition systems become less effective. Therefore, women with severe pelvic girdle pain during pregnancy may be more vulnerable to the pain associated with caesarean section, compared with women without pelvic girdle pain."

They concluded that if there are no medical reasons for a C-section, that vaginal delivery is likely the safest option for women with severe pelvic girdle pain.

Source: MNT


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