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Healthy Tahoe: Exploring birthing options

No matter how much you plan or research ahead of time, child birth may not go as expected. There are important choices to make, and even when you have given birth before, a lot can happen in the moment.

Dr. Amanda Weavil

If you previously had a baby via a C-section delivery and are having another baby, you may have the option to have another cesarean or try a vaginal birth. More women are attempting a vaginal birth after a cesarean, or VBAC, and Barton Family Birthing Center offers mothers this option in a medical environment.

The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends a VBAC as a safe and viable option for most women. Research shows that about 70 percent of women who pursue a trial of labor after a cesarean have a successful vaginal birth.



There are different reasons to consider a vaginal birth after a cesarean. One benefit of a successful VBAC includes a reduced chance of complications and a shorter recovery period. By not undergoing abdominal surgery from a cesarean, women have a lower risk of infection and may experience less blood loss.

Though, a VBAC can be complicated and there are risks to consider. One concern is that a vaginal birth after a cesarean could cause the uterus to tear open, or rupture, requiring an emergency C-section. There is also a chance a cesarean will need to take place if there is fetal distress or the labor fails to progress.



At Barton Family Birthing Center, both VBAC and a repeat C-section delivery are available. Barton holds a low cesarean section rate (currently 9%, one of the lowest in all of CA) and has been doing VBACs safely since 2019, with a 77% success rate. Our experienced, board-certified OB-GYN (obstetrician-gynecologist) physicians can help pregnant women explore their delivery options and determine if VBAC is the right path for them and their baby.

Amanda Weavil, MD, is a board-certified OB-GYN physician at Barton Women’s Health and Barton Community Health Center trained in performing VBAC deliveries. Barton’s Family Birthing Center is recognized as a Blue Distinction Center for Maternity Care and recently earned a spot on the Cal Hospital Compare 2021 Maternity Honor Role. Learn more at BartonHealth.org/FamilyBirthingCenter.


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