Skip to content

Breech Birth in Israel (לידת עכוז)

A birth is called breech when the baby decides to be born with his buttock first, something that happens in about 4% of births. In Israel, it is still common for women to be told that they “have to” do a c-section when the fetus is in breech presentation while actually, this is just one of the options you can choose.

Why are women recommended to do a c-section?

C-section has become the standard mode of delivery since the famous study “Term Breech Trial”, published in 2000. The study found that fewer babies die during delivery when a c-section is chosen. The study has since been criticized because of its problematic clinical conduct as well as the interpretation and applicability of its result. Today, most midwives and doctors are barely trained in vaginal breech deliveries, so that the medical staff has “unlearned” how to support women during a vaginal breech birth. This is why most hospitals in Israel forbid women with breech babies to give birth vaginally .There is an ongoing debate if c-sections are generally preferred over vaginal breech births when considering the risks for the mother and the long-term health outcomes for the babies. As in other countries, more and more doctors in Israel support and even promote vaginal births because of the benefits connected with it. In general, the best option depends on the individual situation (e.g. breech position) and individual preferences.

What can I do if my baby is in breech position in late pregnancy?

– Inform yourself, check out the evidence, get second and third opinions, and listen to your instinct! Because the majority of medical staff is not well-trained in vaginal breech births and will tell you that you “have to” do a c-section, I very much recommend speaking to a doctor which supports vaginal breech births. By doing so you can get information about the benefits and risks and make an informed decision. This fb-group has great resources about breech births in Israel: לידת עכוז- זאת אפשרות!

If you choose a c-section, inform yourself about the different choices you have (e.g. French c-section, “natural” c-sections, “normal” c-section). Remember, for a planned c-section you can choose any hospital!

– Consider an External Cephalic Version (ECV). This is a manual procedure by which a doctor tries to turn the fetus. As this procedure has some risks it is usually done in the labor room. It has an around 50% success rate.

– You can try all kinds of alternative ways to turn the fetus: 1. Spinning babies 2. Hypnotherapy 3. Embryo balance 4. Webster technique 5. Acupuncture … and much more.- My tip: try to relax, talk to the baby, and do not spend too much time trying to turn the baby around. As your muscles in the uterus relax they create more space for the baby to turn. – Your body, your baby, your choice!

Did nothing help turning baby around? Sometimes there are good reasons a baby doesn’t turn, trust her that she knows what is best. Breech is normal, just not majority!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *