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Number of caesarean deliveries on the rise in Jordan — SIGI

Medical experts say caesareans pose greater health risks than natural labour

By Sawsan Tabazah - Oct 02,2016 - Last updated at Oct 02,2016

AMMAN — The Sisterhood Is Global Institute (SIGI) on Sunday warned of the health risks of caesarean deliveries, which are on the rise in Jordan. 

The number of babies delivered by caesareans rose by 1.1 per cent in Ministry of Health hospitals in 2015, compared to 2014, SIGI said in a statement. 

Caesareans should not be performed unless there is a medical need, SIGI said, noting that the mortality rates for the operation stand at 13 in every 100,000 deliveries, compared with 3.5 in 100,000 for natural deliveries. 

Obstetrician and IVF consultant Ayman Smadi said that preferences for caesarean deliveries were on the rise globally for several non-medical reasons. 

Some doctors prefer to perform caesareans to protect themselves from legal consequences if a problem arises during a natural delivery, Smadi told The Jordan Times.  

Not all hospitals have sufficient equipment or staff to monitor patients, while the doctor will be responsible for any problems that arise, he added. 

Meanwhile, many women ask for caesareans to avoid the pain of a natural delivery, the consultant said. 

Some doctors consider their payment when choosing to perform caesareans, he added. 

“The doctor is paid JD80 for the normal delivery with five hours of stress and pressure, while for a caesarean, he gets JD200-300 for a half-hour operation,” said Smadi. 

Many nurses also prefer that patients undergo caesareans because of the pain and the long process of natural childbirth, he continued.  

According to SIGI, the number of deliveries in 2015 dropped by 3.5 per cent in Ministry of Health hospitals compared with 2014. Public hospitals have a limited number of obstetric tables with a large number of patients, Smadi said. 

“Many deliveries in public hospitals are done in corridors and beds,” the consultant said.

Obstetrician and gynaecologist Rami Kilani said caesareans presented far greater health risks than natural labour. 

“Surgical wound infection, infection of the uterus, and venous or pulmonary thrombosis are the dangers of caesareans to mothers,” Kilani told The Jordan Times.

Babies born by caesarean are more likely to enter the neonatal intensive care unit, he said.

 

Caesareans present an increased risk of respiratory problems among newborns, he added.

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