Breech Birth

breech birth

What is a Breech Birth?


A breech birth refers to the position a baby is in to descend the birth canal. Normally, a baby is born head first, but in breech position, the feet or buttocks will come first. This happens in around three percent of births. There are three different types of breech birth presentations:

  • Complete breech: The buttocks are pointed downward with legs folded at the knees with feet near the buttocks.
  • Frank breech: The buttocks are aimed at the birth canal with legs sticking straight up in front of the body.
  • Footling breech: One or both feet point downward to be delivered first.

What Are the Risks Associated with a Breech Birth?
Most breech babies are born healthy. However, when an unborn child is in such position, delivery can be more complicated and some health concerns are elevated. Breech babies are at a higher risk for cerebral palsy.

What Options are Available if a Baby is in Breech Position?
Your doctor will offer a variety of solutions to either turn the baby or deliver him or her in a safer manner. The first option is an external cephalic version (ECV), when the obstetrician applies pressure to the mother’s abdomen in attempt to turn the baby into a headfirst position. Although it can cause discomfort, the procedure is safe and is successful 50% of the time.

If ECV does not work, your midwife and obstetrician will discuss other options with you. The most risk-free way is to give birth via caesarean section, although in certain situations it may not be recommended. Breech babies can also be delivered vaginally, but is advised against if:

  • The baby’s feet are below its buttocks
  • The baby weighs more than 8.5 pounds
  • The baby weighs less than 4.4 pounds (premature)
  • The mother has had a caesarean delivery before
  • The mother has a narrow pelvis

Thurswell Law Can Help You and Your Baby
If your baby has a birth injury due to a breech birth, you may be entitled to monetary compensation. Thurswell Law has been representing families in birth injury cases for over 47 years. Contact us today for a free consultation at 248-354-2222.

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Southfield, MI 48075

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