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    Cesarean Section in Multiple Pregnancy

    A cesarean section (C-section) makes it possible to deliver a fetus through an incision in a woman's abdomen and uterus.

    Multiple pregnancies usually require a cesarean delivery. But for twin births, vaginal delivery may be an option.

    Reasons to have cesarean delivery for a multiple pregnancy

    You may need a cesarean delivery if:

    • You have three or more fetuses.
    • A fetus is breech or crosswise (transverse) camera.gif. (A first-born breech is delivered by cesarean; a second-born breech after a vaginally delivered first-born can sometimes be delivered vaginally.)
    • A fetus weighs less than 2000 g.
    • You have locking twins.
    • You have twins that are joined by any part of the body (conjoined).
    • You have twins that share one amniotic sac (monoamniotic twins), because of the risk that the cords will get tangled.
    • There are signs of fetal distress, such as a very rapid or very slow heart rate.
    • Your cervix has not dilated over time despite adequate uterine contractions.
    • The uterus is overstretched and cannot contract enough during labor (uterine inertia), making labor long and difficult.

    A twin vaginal birth after one previous cesarean (VBAC) is sometimes considered a safe choice. For more information, see the topic Vaginal Birth After Cesarean (VBAC).

    A cesarean section is a surgical operation, and recovery is longer than after a routine vaginal delivery. You will need extra help while recovering.

    For more information on cesarean section, see the topic Cesarean Section.

    ByHealthwise Staff
    Primary Medical ReviewerSarah Marshall, MD - Family Medicine
    Specialist Medical ReviewerWilliam Gilbert, MD - Maternal and Fetal Medicine

    Current as ofNovember 14, 2014

    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    Last Updated: November 14, 2014
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

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