Is VBAC possible after vertical tear in uterus?

I am 6 months pregnant w/ my 2nd child and have been hoping for a VBAC this time. However my midwife just informed me that during my c-section I had a vertical tear in my uterus (which my OB never told us about, but that was noted in the operative report). My midwife has said that I can still try for a VBAC, but I am no longer eligible to use the birthing center -- but must have my baby at the hospital.

My questions to you are: how common are uterine tears during c-sections? AND in your opinion does this make my attempting a VBAC any more risky to myself or the baby?


Peg Plumbo CNM

Peg Plumbo has been a certified nurse-midwife (CNM) since 1976. She has assisted at over 1,000 births and currently teaches in the... Read more

How frustrating - to interfere with your plans to deliver in the birthing center and not to have been told. It is fortunate however that your midwife discovered this. Tears are very common in C-births and vertical tears put you at a slightly higher risk of uterine rupture. This is why you need to labor close by a facility where an immediate cesarean can be performed.

We don't have decades of data on the success of all types of previous complications on chances of a successful vaginal birth after cesarean. So it is hard to give you statistics. Success also depends on many factors: the location and size of the tear, the repair, the healing process, this baby's position, labor progress, as well as the experience of your care providers.

Most likely all will go well but you will need fetal monitoring and close observation.

I wish you a happy birth experience.

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