Outcomes of Trial of Labor after a Cesarean Section in Bomet County, Kenya
Keywords:emergency repeat cesarean section (ERCS, trial of labour after cesarean section(TOLAC),, VBAC
Trial of labor after cesarean section (TOLAC) is recommended for women with one prior cesarean section. However, TOLAC positive outcomes depend on selecting candidates to achieve higher success rates. Most available TOLAC data to inform patient selection originates from developed countries, which limits a patient-centered TOLAC practice in low-resource settings. Thus, we used a prospective observational cross-sectional approach to assess the success rate of TOLAC and establish the maternal and fetal factors associated with successful TOLAC in 170 women with one previous scar at two referral hospitals in Bomet County, a low-resource setting in Kenya. The primary maternal and neonatal outcomes were compared between those who had a vaginal birth after a cesarean section (VBAC) and those who had an emergency repeat cesarean section (ERCS) following a failed TOLAC between October 2022 and June 2023. The TOLAC success rate was 48.2% with the most common indication for emergency repeat cesarean section being failure to progress (34.1%). Factors associated with successful TOLAC included inter-delivery interval >60 months (p-0.044), and parity 2-4 (p- <0.001). Breech presentation and non-reassuring fetal status (NRFS) as indications for previous cesarean section, were associated with a successful VBAC (p-< 0.001, 0.033). In contrast, a birth weight of >3500 g was associated with an increased risk of ERCS. Moreover, a failed TOLAC was associated with a prolonged (>4 days) hospital stay (p-0.012). Our findings suggest that with proper patient selection, TOLAC remains a viable option with better outcomes if successful. However, TOLAC candidates should be evaluated based on the contextual factors of a given setting, hence careful patient selection is recommended to improve outcomes associated with TOLAC.
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Copyright (c) 2024 Eunice Carolyne Ondego, Amos Otara, Peter Halestrap, Cheryl Cowles
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