How a delivery procedure(Vaginal or Cesarean) is determined?

Updated: Aug 6

Normal and C-Section are the most common methods of delivery procedures. Certain conditions has to be met for performing these deliveries.


Cesarean Delivery:

  • C-Section is the surgical delivery of a baby by an incision through mother's abdomen and womb.

  • Mostly Cesarean birth is a planned one but in some cases emergency C-Section is recommended.

Common reasons for C-Section:

Abnormal position of the baby:

The normal position of the baby is head-down with the head facing birth canal. Abnormal positions make a risky normal delivery.

Abnormal Fetal Heart rate:

A normal heart rate of the fetus varies from 120 to 160 beats per minute. Baby with normal heart rate can handle the contractions of labor. If the baby is struggling with abnormal heart rate, it can be taken care by changing mother's position, giving the mother oxygen, or may be by an emergency cesarean.

Cervix not dilating:

Dilation is measured in centimeters. For a smooth delivery, cervix should be fully dilated to 10 cm. There are cases where the cervix dilates barely 3-4 cm even after 20 long hours of labor. Cesarean is opted for baby and mother's safety.

Problem in Placenta:

Baby's umbilical cord arises from the placenta. It provides oxygen and nutrients to the baby and removes wastes from the blood. There are situations when placenta is blocking the uterus and there is a chance for placenta to get detached from uterus too soon. Cesarean delivery may be advised for safety.

Medical conditions of the mother:

Mother with diabetes, high blood pressure, viral infections, or HIV are advised for C-Section. This is to prevent the spread of infections to the baby.

More than one:

If the mother is giving birth to twins or other multiples, cesarean may be advised.

Cesarean already:

Women who had C-section in the firth birth may be advised to have C-section during the second delivery because there may be situations like blood clot, the scar may not be strong enough to hold together during labor contractions.


There may be other reasons for your doctor to recommend C-Section.


Normal Delivery:

  • Vaginal delivery is the natural way of giving birth.

  • It should be the first preferred method of delivery. However if the mother is experiencing any of the above conditions and doctor is advising for cesarean, it is the very best option.

There are health issues in both delivery methods. There were a lot of fetal deaths in the past by performing normal delivery without knowing the medical conditions of the mother and baby. With advancement in technology, C-Section saved lot of lives. Still if the mother and baby are healthy, natural way is preferred best. At the end of the day, health of the mother and baby is most important and it should be the doctor who decides whether it going to be a normal or cesarean delivery, not the family!