What to know about delivery with IBD
Determining a mode of delivery is an important step in your pregnancy journey. Whether you’ve been diagnosed with Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis, we’re here to help you understand your IBD delivery options.
Vaginal delivery vs. C-section
Vaginal deliveries are a common delivery mode in women with IBD. However, there are certain instances such as active perianal disease or active involvement of disease in which a cesarean section (C-section) is recommended. For women who have an ileoanal pouch (IPAA), or J-pouch, your doctor may suggest a C-section. However, a J-pouch doesn’t completely exclude the possibility of a vaginal delivery, so make sure you talk with your doctor about what’s right for you and your baby.
Mode of delivery has been evaluated and shows no impact on the mother's IBD. In fact, one study found there was no difference in IBD-related surgery, need for hospitalization or escalation in medical therapy among women with either mode of delivery.
Furthermore, there is no increased risk of development of new perianal fistulas among women with Crohn’s disease after vaginal delivery compared to C-section. Women with a history of IPAA may have increased nighttime bowel movements and incontinence, but these reported symptoms did not differ based on mode of delivery. Baseline pouch function was also restored after pregnancy among women with either vaginal delivery or C-section.