Malpractice News

June 1, 2013

C-section deliveries may increase risk of childhood obesity

C-section deliveries are on the rise in the United States but their risk factors aren’t. It has long been known that since C-sections constitute major surgery for mothers they entail long recoveries with possible complications. But it has been only in recent years that the effect these deliveries have on the babies has become apparent.

For instance, a new study conducted in the UK found an association between C-section delivery and future childhood obesity. Researchers looked at over 10,000 infants and found that “eleven-year-olds delivered by C-section . . . were 83 percent more likely to be overweight or obese than their vaginally born peers.” This percent was found even after other factors were taken into account.

C-section babies start smaller, grow bigger

In fact on average, though most C-section babies start out two ounces smaller than those that are vaginally born, they quickly make up for lost time. By as early as six weeks, “C-section babies were consistently heavier than vaginally-born infants at almost all check-ins.”

Babies may miss out on “friendly bacteria”

Doctors aren’t sure why this might be, though Dr. Jan Blustein, who led the study, postulated that it has something to do with babies missing out on the “friendly bacteria” housed in the birth canal. Teresa Ajslev of the Institute of Preventive Medicine added, “Generally, the early colonization and establishment of the intestine with bacteria seems very important. Yet, much more work is needed before we can explain the mechanisms of the early bacterial colonization.”


Site design and development by Design Spike®, Inc.