Caesarean section rates over the past decades have caused much concern; especially caesarean section on maternal request has been debated among healthcare professionals. The purpose of this study was to investigate women with normal pregnancies undergoing caesarean section on maternal request (in the absence of medical indication). The focus of the investigated variables were age, parity, ethnicity, previous caesarean delivery and reason for the request.
This was a retrospective study that used information provided by a local birth register from Norway s largest delivery unit. A total of 149 women who had undergone a caesarean section on maternal request were included, presenting 12 % of all caesarean deliveries at the hospital during the study period.
The women requesting a caesarean tended to be older, multipara and from a western country with a previous caesarean delivery and a negative delivery experience. Fear of childbirth was also often reported. A significant difference regarding fear of childbirth, preference for caesarean and macrosomia was found between the primipara and the multipara.
The most frequent reasons for obtaining caesarean section on maternal request were previous negative birth experience and fear of child birth.