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Vaginal Birth after Caesearean (VBAC)

Japan With Kids - Forums: Health Topics: Pregnancy/Birth/Childrearing: Vaginal Birth after Caesearean (VBAC)
By mama on Tuesday, December 23, 2003 - 8:51 am:

Anyone had a VBAC in Tokyo?
Please share your experience. I am looking for doctors who are open to VBAC and dont write you off as caesearean on the first visit. Thanks!

By Lisa E. Sullivan on Friday, December 26, 2003 - 3:58 pm:

I had a VBAC at Seibo hospital in Shinjuku almost four years ago. Although Seibo hospital's policy (at least at the time) was "once a c-section, always a c-section", I spoke with my doctor about the risks and showed him literature supporting VBAC success.

Things were fine until my doctor left Seibo hospital a month before my due date. Only the most senior doctor on staff would accept me as a VBAC patient, and once again things were fine for about two weeks. Then the closer my due date got, the more he pressured me to have a c-section. In his defense, he knew how many millenium babies were due in early 2000, so he wanted to schedule as many c-sections as possible. But I didn't give up. He ended up writing in my chart that I clearly knew the risks involved in having a VBAC. I checked into the hospital about a week later at 2PM at 4cm dilated. The midwives were great but they were very concerned about the stress of the contractions on my c-section incision; however, my lower abdomen was not where I felt the tension! By 10PM my doctor was advising my husband that I have a c-section, but my husband knew how important having a VBAC was to me and said we wouldn't. Fortunately, the best midwife team in the world came on duty after that, and with their coaching and my husband's support my son was finally born at 1:35AM.

The birth didn't go at all as I thought it would, but I'm happy I persisted and had the birth I wanted.

You may find information on VBAC-friendly doctors through the Tokyo birth education group or mothers at La Leche league. Dr. Sakamoto would have taken me as a VBAC patient but I am on Japanese health insurance, which he doesn't take. If you are comfortable giving birth outside a hospital, a small clinic or midwife may be a good option. And people and places change -- all the doctors at Seibo have changed since four years ago.

Good luck in finding a good doctor or midwife and if this is the birth you really want, don't give up!

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