National C-section rate highest ever, study says

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More than one in three babies in the U.S. is now delivered by cesarean section ...

Thirty-four percent of single-baby births in 2009 were done surgically, the highest percentage ever.

... "This is a big issue, and this is actually going to come under a lot of scrutiny in the coming year," ...

... changing physician practices, such as inducing labor and a desire by physicians and patients to schedule convenient times for labor, may be leading to the increase ...

... no data exists to show “that higher rates improve any outcomes, yet the C-section rates continue to rise.”

"At the end of the day, the C-section rate has risen ... over the past decade, and we don't have any improved baby outcomes to show for it ...

In fact, hemorrhaging from C-sections is one of several possible factors in the state’s increased maternal death rate ... The number of women in California who died from pregnancy-related complications rose from 5.6 out of 100,000 live births in 1996 to 14 out of 100,000 in 2008 ...

... "but we do know [caesarean] causes increased morbidity, or complications, so the thought is if you do enough of them, you're going to see more direct complications."

... the main risk comes when women have a second, third or fourth C-section. As the procedure's use increases, more women will have multiple C-sections, meaning the risks will be increasingly present in the future ...