Our Southlake, Fort Worth ObGyns explain what happens when you carry a breech baby
You’re ready to give birth, and you feel like you’re prepared — until your ObGyn tells you that you have a breech baby. For a vaginal birth, the baby is ideally positioned head down, but 3 to 4 percent of pregnancies involve a breech baby. During the last weeks of pregnancy, if the baby is positioned buttocks, feet or both first instead of head down, we call it a breech presentation.
Breech Positions Defined
Every breech baby doesn’t present in the same position. Your breech baby may be in one of three breech positions. Our Southlake and Fort Worth ObGyns may refer to your breech baby in these ways.
- When the baby presents bottom down first and has bent knees, this is a complete breech.
- If the baby stretches his or her legs out toward the head, we call it a frank breech.
- When the baby is positioned with one leg hanging down, we call it a footling or incomplete breech.
Our Southlake and Fort Worth ObGyns may discover your breech presentation during a pelvic examination or when they are feeling your belly. If so, they will order an ultrasound to confirm their suspicions.
Can My Breech Baby Be Repositioned?
We might be able to turn a breech baby using external cephalic version, or turning the baby.
According to the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, more than 50 percent of the time, turning a breech baby baby works; however, some babies may turn back into the breech position after the procedure.
If you still have a breech position after week 36, we may try to turn the baby. This procedure should be done where a delivery room is easily accessible in the rare case that any problems occur.
During the procedure, your ObGyn will use her hands to apply firm pressure to the abdomen to get the baby to rotate to a head-down position. During this process, we use an ultrasound to guide us, and we monitor the baby’s heart.
Not every mother with a breech baby will qualify to have an external cephalic version. We do not attempt this with a mother carrying multiples.
What Are My Delivery Options for a Breech Baby?
If your baby has not turned head down, you will probably need a C-section. This is usually the safest way to deliver a breech baby for the sake of both mother and baby. Talk to our Southlake and Fort Worth ObGyns if you have concerns about a C-section. We are highly experienced in performing the procedure.
For more information about pregnancy and birth, contact us for an appointment.Tweet
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