C-Section Rate Rises: 2007 U.S. Cesarean Rate Hit 31.8 Percent

The CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics released the findings of its analysis of nearly 99 percent of all birth records reported by 50 states, the District of Columbia, and U.S. territories. Of the record 4,317,119 babies born in 2007, 1,372,844 were delivered via Cesarean section. The c-section rate rose 2 percent in 2007, to 31.8 percent, marking the 11th consecutive year of increase and another record high for the United States according to the CDC. 

 

From the .pdf report, “Births: Preliminary Data for 2007”:

The preliminary cesarean delivery rate rose 2 percent in 2007, to 31.8 percent of all births, marking the 11th consecutive year of increase and another record high for the United States (see table below). This rate has climbed by more than 50 percent over the last decade (20.7 percent in 1996). Increases between 2006 and 2007 in the percentage of births delivered by cesarean were reported for most age groups (data not shown), and for the three largest race and Hispanic origin groups: non-Hispanic white (32.0 percent in 2007), non-Hispanic black (33.8 percent) and Hispanic (30.4 percent). The rise in the total cesarean delivery rate in recent years has been shown to result from higher rates of both first and repeat cesareans (1).

 

Also interesting is that the number of births in the U.S. in 2007 surpassed the peak of the postwar “baby boom” in 1957.

The preliminary estimate of births in 2007 was 4,317,119, 1 percent more than in 2006 (4,265,555) and the highest number ever registered for the United States. This number surpasses the peak of the postwar ‘‘baby boom,’’ in 1957. Births rose for each race and Hispanic origin group, with increases ranging from less than 1 percent for non Hispanic white women to 6 percent for Asian or Pacific Islander (API) women. Births to non-Hispanic black and Hispanic women each increased by nearly 2 percent.

 

Other findings:

  • The percentage of low birthweight babies declined slightly between 2006 and 2007, from 8.3 percent to 8.2 percent. This is the first decline in the percentage of low birthweight babies since 1984.
  • The preterm birth rate (infants delivered at less than 37 weeks of pregnancy) decreased 1 percent in 2007 to 12.7 percent. The decline was seen mostly among infants born late preterm (between 34 and 36 weeks).

The full report is available at www.cdc.gov/nchs.

 

 

2007 U.S. Cesarean Rate Posts:

Cesarean Delivery Rates by State, 2007

Map of Cesarean Delivery Rates by State, 2007

C-Section Rate Rises: 2007 U.S. Cesarean Rate Hit 31.8 Percent