Birth clinic at Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital proves successful

PUBLISHED: 14:21 13 September 2011

Archant Norfolk Photographic © 2009

A clinic at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital dedicated to helping women have a natural birth after previously giving birth by caesarean section, has proved a great success.

The Birth After Caesarean Section (BAC) clinic was set up at NNUH by consultant obstetrician Fran Harlow, with two specialised midwives, and is aimed at encouraging more women who have had one previous baby by C-section to go on to have a normal delivery.

Previously 40pc of women who had had a C-section chose to have a natural birth and only 64pc succeeded in doing so, based on figures between November 2009 and April 2010.

But between May and December 2010, when the new BAC clinic was in place, 68pc of women chose to have a normal delivery and 73pc of them did so successfully.

Miss Harlow said: “It is important the women are allowed to make informed individual choices and if a woman does want to have another caesarean section then that’s fine.

“The new clinic does, however, aim to show it is possible for most women to go on to have a normal delivery despite having had one previous child by section.

“Very often women are just not aware that a normal birth is possible after a caesarean and we are delighted that this service has had such a positive impact.”

Nutritional therapist Catherine Jeans, 34, from Norwich, is one of the women who have successfully had a second baby with the help of the BAC clinic at NNUH.

Catherine had wanted to have a home birth with her first child but her daughter Lucia was an undiagnosed breech which meant that she needed an emergency caesarean section.

She said: “I was planning a home birth but I was rushed into hospital and had an emergency section. I had desperately wanted to have a natural birth.

“I knew I wanted to try and have a natural birth with our second baby and it was nice to have a specialist BAC clinic where they were supportive from the get go. My midwife Karen Dunlop was absolutely wonderful, very supportive and encouraging.”

Catherine went on to have a natural birth in hospital, had no pain relief, and her son Lucas was born weighing 9bs 11oz. Catherine also used the HypnoBirthing method and found it very helpful with her natural birth.

Women attending the BAC clinic at NNUH are also being shown a DVD supporting VBAC.

The short film was produced by Norwich-based Gig House Films and features a couple due to have their second baby after their first was born by C-section.

Watch the BAC film at

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