Objective: To determine mode of delivery and occurrence of uterine rupture in women with a previous caesarean section (CS) in the Netherlands.
Materials and methods: During a 1-year period 38 hospitals in the Netherlands registered prospectively mode of delivery, use of prostaglandins or oxytocin and occurrence of uterine rupture in all women with a previous CS.
Results: There were 4569 women with a previous CS. Trial of labour (TOL) was attempted in 71.7%, of whom 76.0% delivered vaginally. The vaginal birth after caesarean (VBAC)-rate was 54.4%. Forty-nine uterine ruptures occurred (1.1%), of which 48 occurred during a TOL (1.5%). There were four perinatal deaths (1.2/1000 TOL) and 3 hysterectomies (0.9/1000 TOL) related to the rupture. Use of prostaglandin E2 alone or combined with oxytocin was significantly associated with an increased risk of uterine rupture (OR 6.8, 95% CI 3.2-14.3, OR 4.8, 95% CI 1.6-14.6, respectively). The same held for augmentation with oxytocin (OR 2.2, 95% CI 1.04-5.0).
Conclusion: The success rate of TOL was 76%, resulting in a VBAC rate of 54%. Uterine rupture occurred in 1.5% during a TOL, with a risk of perinatal death of 1.2 per 1000. The risk of uterine rupture increased significantly when labour was induced with prostaglandins alone or combined with oxytocin or when labour was augmented with oxytocin.