Riverside OB/GYN Doctors to Offer Free Lecture on the C-Section Epidemic: How to Avoid a Cesarean Section and Ensure a Healthy Natural Childbirth

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The nation's Cesarean-section rate has reached an all-time high, and many doctors discourage or do not perform VBACs (vaginal birth after Cesarean) on pregnant women. In Connecticut, more than one in three babies is delivered via C-section.

Russell Turk, M.D., and Karen Zino, M.D. of Riverside Obstetrics & Gynecology, and Dr. Brian Yomtov of Advanced Chiropractic Health and Wellness, are giving a free pregnancy and childbirth lecture addressing what doctors and patients can do to avoid a C-section, achieve a low-intervention or natural childbirth and undergo VBAC safely. The talk will be held on Tuesday, November 16th at 9:30 A.M. in the art gallery of the Greenwich YWCA, 259 East Putnam Avenue, Greenwich, CT.

The lecture will address why the nation’s C-section rate has reached an all-time high, making it the most common surgery performed in U.S. hospitals. In Connecticut, 34.6 percent of all babies are delivered by C-section, the seventh highest rate in the country. At some local hospitals, the average C-section rate tops 40 percent.

“If you are planning to have a baby any time soon, this is not good news,” says Dr. Turk, a board certified OB/GYN who has been practicing medicine for 20 years. “Ideally you want to avoid a C-section because it is a major surgical procedure that involves a longer recovery time and has an overall higher risk of complications compared with vaginal delivery.” In addition, the likelihood of infection, hemorrhage, injury to the bowel and bladder, increased risk for future pregnancies and the possibility of compromised fertility are all greater.

The main goal of the lecture is to educate women about what is driving the trend and help them understand:

-how to achieve a low intervention or natural childbirth
-the truth about VBACs (vaginal birth after Cesarean)
-what patients and their doctors can do to avoid a Cesarean birth
-the pitfalls of labor induction, scheduled C-sections and the risks and benefits of natural childbirth
-tools to promote a more natural, healthy pregnancy
-how to prevent or limit the amount of discomfort experienced in pregnancy due to the added stresses on the body
-how to alleviate pregnancy ailments naturally using chiropractic techniques, acupuncture and acupressure.

Turk says many patients are frustrated and/or disappointed that so many doctors routinely discourage patients from a trial of labor after a prior C-section.

This trend has created a vicious cycle because women who have their first baby via C-section are far more likely to deliver subsequent babies the same way. The number of vaginal deliveries after Cesarean (known as VBACs) has dropped from a high of 28.3% of all C-sections to 7.9% in 2005. 

The main risk associated with VBAC is a one percent possibility of uterine rupture, but fetal distress can rapidly ensue, requiring an emergency C-section. The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) and many studies support the use of VBAC under the right circumstances, and if the patient is appropriately counseled.

In fact, ACOG released guidelines in 2010 stating that attempting a VBAC is a safe and appropriate choice for most women who have had a prior cesarean delivery. However, many doctors routinely advise women against it because they think the small risk is not worth the chance of a bad outcome and subsequent lawsuit. Many physicians have given up the practice altogether.

Another reason for the rising C-section rate is that few doctors deliver breech babies vaginally any more. While severe neurologic injury can occur in rare cases, about 50% of breech babies can be safely turned head down using a procedure known as version, or the manual turning of a malpositioned baby. Unfortunately, many doctors are no longer adequately trained or experienced in this procedure and others stopped doing it because of the small risk of complications.

Cesareans are sometimes necessary, of course. The most common reasons include fetal distress, unresolved arrest of labor, malpresentations such as breech babies and some multiple pregnancies.

About Riverside Obstetrics & Gynecology

Riverside Obstetrics & Gynecology is a full-service medical practice in Greenwich, CT combining state-of-the-art medicine with natural approaches for women. It was founded in 2004 by Russell Turk, MD and includes Karen Zino, M.D. an obstetrician/gynecologist and Louise Napoli, ND, a doctor of naturopathic medicine.

Speaker Bios

Russell Turk: Dr. Russell Turk is a 1986 graduate of Boston College. He received his medical degree in 1990 from Cornell University and he completed his OB/GYN training at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City. Dr. Turk is board certified in obstetrics and gynecology and has special training and/or interest in advanced laparoscopy and hysteroscopy, chronic vulvar and vaginal pain and high-risk obstetrics. Dr. Turk's experience includes four years in private practice at The Center for Women's Health in Darien, and six years with the Mid-Atlantic Permanente Medical Group in Falls Church, VA. He is a an expert for Babycenter.com and a former writer for AOL, where he wrote the Dr. Is In column on health care reform.

Karen Zino: After working for a number of years as a physician assistant in the Tri-State area in the fields of primary care and women's health, Dr. Zino decided to pursue her dreams of becoming an M.D. She completed her OB/GYN training at the University of Connecticut School of Medicine and Monmouth Medical Center, a Drexel University affiliate in New Jersey. Dr. Zino joined Dr. Turk in 2009 in providing personalized obstetric and gynecologic services, including an array of minimally invasive gynecologic surgical procedures. Dr. Zino is board certified in obstetrics and gynecology and has special training and/or interest in Robotics surgery, high-risk obstetrics and adolescent medicine.
Brian Yomtov: Dr. Brian Yomtov is a licensed chiropractic physician and a board certified acupuncturist who owns Advanced Chiropractic and Wellness, LLC, located in Stamford and Norwalk, CT. He received his Doctor of Chiropractic degree from National University of Health Sciences in Lombard, Illinois; he did his undergraduate study in Exercise Science at the University Of Rhode Island. Prior to attending chiropractic college, Dr. Yomtov worked as a personal fitness trainer. His primary diagnostic tool is a specialty called Applied Kinesiology (AK), which draws from many different therapies, including chiropractic, osteopathic medicine, acupuncture, clinical nutrition, psychology and rehabilitation. Dr. Yomtov is certified from the Academy of Chiropractic Family Practice and Council on Chiropractic Pediatrics (CACCP). In addition to his private practice, Dr. Yomtov has taught courses in anatomy, kinesiology, pathology, exercise and nutrition at the Connecticut Center of Massage Therapy in Westport.

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