Pregnancy outcomes associated with Cesarean deliveries in Peruvian public health facilities
Gustavo F Gonzales,1–2 Vilma L Tapia,2 Alfredo L Fort,3 Ana Pilar Betran3
1Department of Biological and Physiological Sciences, Faculty of Sciences and Philosophy, 2Instituto de Investigaciones de la Altura, Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia, Lima, Peru; 3Department of Reproductive Health and Research, World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland
Abstract: A continuous rise in the rate of cesarean deliveries has been reported in many countries over recent decades. This trend has prompted the emergence of a debate on the risks and benefits associated with cesarean section. The present study was designed to estimate cesarean section rates over time during the period between 2000 and 2010 in Peru and to present outcomes for each mode of delivery. This is a secondary analysis of a large database obtained from the Perinatal Information System, which includes 570,997 pregnant women and their babies from 43 Peruvian public health facilities in three geographical regions: coast, highlands, and jungle. Over 10 years, 558,901 women delivered 563,668 infants weighing at least 500 g. The cesarean section rate increased from 25.5% in 2000 to 29.9% in 2010 (26.9% average; P < 0.01). The rate of stillbirths was lower with cesarean than vaginal deliveries (P < 0.01). On the other hand, and as expected, the rates for preterm births, twin pregnancies, and preeclampsia were higher in women who delivered by cesarean section (P < 0.01). More importantly, the rate of maternal mortality was 5.5 times higher in the cesarean section group than in the vaginal delivery group. Data suggest that cesarean sections are associated with adverse pregnancy outcomes.
Keywords: elective cesarean, emergency cesarean, geographical regions, cesarean rates over time, adverse outcomes, developing country
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