Contrary to what some experts believe C- section does not affect infants' health. The babies delivered by cesarean don't need to visit the doctor frequently early in life according to a new study.
The new study, published in the journal Epidemiology, Hong Kong researchers found that babies delivered by C-section did not have higher rates of hospitalization or outpatient visits during their first 18 months of life.
"The findings should reassure parents whose children were delivered by caesarean in that we could not find any substantial adverse impact in terms of health services use," Dr. Gabriel M. Leung, the study's lead author.
Some researchers believe that children born through c-section may have long term health complications or may increasing their chances of conditions such as asthma, allergies and gastrointestinal symptoms.
In a vaginal birth The new born Passing through the birth canal are exposed to "good" bacteria from their mothers, which is thought to be important in immune system development. Unlike the child born through the c-section who is deprive of this benefit. Thus leaving them vulnerable to certain health problems like allergies etc.
However, there was some evidence of a weak link between C-section delivery and doctor visits for certain conditions, including gastrointestinal symptoms and skin problems.
So the study cannot "rule out" the possibility of certain health effects, noted Leung, a researcher at the University of Hong Kong.
The researchers based their findings on an 18-month follow-up study of 8,327 children born in Hong Kong in 1997 -- 27 percent of whom were delivered by C-section.
Overall, the study found that 28 percent of children who were delivered vaginally were admitted to the hospital for some reason by the time they were 18 months old. That compared with 23 percent of children delivered by C-section. About half of the C-section group had to visit a doctor for an illness, versus 46 percent of children born vaginally.
Still, they conclude, given the rise in cesarean rates in so many countries, studies should continue to follow the potential effects on children's and mothers' long-term well-being.
In recent time it has been seen that there is a growth of medically unnecessary, elective C-sections.
Though there was no evidence of longer-term harm in this study, "we still recommend the judicious, informed and evidence-based" use of cesareans, Leung said.