Why do women request caesarean section in a normal, healthy first pregnancy?

Churchill Livingstone
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Midwifery, 2010, 26 (4), pp. 394 - 400
Issue Date:
Full metadata record
Files in This Item:
Filename Description Size
Thumbnail2009006451OK.pdf209.55 kB
Adobe PDF
Background and context a growing number of childbearing women are reported to prefer a caesarean section in the absence of a medical reason. Qualitative research describing factors influencing this preference in pregnant women is lacking. Objective to describe Australian women's request for caesarean section in the absence of medical indicators in their first pregnancy. Design advertisements were placed in local newspapers inviting women to participate in a telephone interview exploring women's experience of caesarean section. Thematic analysis was used to analyse data. Setting two states of Australia: Queensland and Western Australia. Participants a community sample of women (n=210) responded to the advertisements. This paper presents the findings elicited from interviews conducted with 14 women who requested a caesarean section during their first pregnancy in the absence of a known medical indication. Findings childbirth fear, issues of control and safety, and a devaluing of the female body and birth process were the main themes underpinning women's requests for a non-medically-indicated caesarean section. Women perceived that medical discourses supported and reinforced their decision as a `safe and `responsible choice.
Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: