Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Thank you for your interest in ICAN Seattle. ICAN is a volunteer based support network for parents who have experienced a cesarean delivery, whether planned or unplanned.

We meet for in person support on the 2nd Monday of each month, from 7-9pm, at OneLife Community Church 3524 NE 95th Street Seattle, WA 98115, on the upper level.

Our current coleaders are Marcia and Jennifer. Jean is currently in the process of working toward leadership.

Our Facebook group can be found here. If you request to join, please check your message requests. You will receive two messages from Jennifer.

Thank you and we look forward to seeing you soon!



Fall Update!

Hello ICAN-Seattle community!

For those of you new to our community, welcome, and for those of you who have been around a long time, welcome back!

We have some exciting changes to announce.

First, we found a NEW MEETING SPACE. We are still meeting on the 2nd Monday of each month, 7-9pm, but our new location is at OneLife Community Church 3524 NE 95th Street Seattle, WA 98115.

Second, we are pleased to announce the addition of 2 additional co-leaders, Mary Kachel and Rosanne Greenway. Rosanne and Mary are excited to support moms in their journeys. Sharon and Marcia will continue on in their leadership roles.

Finally, if you have appreciated the support you have received from ICAN-Seattle, we encourage you to join ICAN. The International Cesarean Awareness Network, Inc. (ICAN) is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to improve maternal-child health by preventing unnecessary cesareans through education, providing support for cesarean recovery, and promoting Vaginal Birth After Cesarean (VBAC). If you indicate that you are a member of ICAN-Seattle, a portion of your dues will come back to our chapter. We use those dues for numerous things including the purchase of books for our library and for outreach and support.

Thanks so much for your continued support. Looking forward to seeing everyone at our November meeting.

Cesarean Awareness Month 2014

cam 2014April is Cesarean Awareness Month and the ICAN Seattle chapter would like to hear from you.  Send us a brief statement about what ICAN and ICAN Seattle have meant to you during your childbearing journey.  All entries received during the month of April 2014 will be entered to win an gift card.  Your submission provides ICAN Seattle with the right to use your statement and initials on our website or marketing materials.

Additionally, show your financial support for our local chapter as well as the national organization by renewing or becoming a member of ICAN!  The Seattle Chapter benefits financially from every membership purchased.  During CAM, you can save an additional $5 off the normal  $30 membership.  Please, if you have enjoyed the support of ICAN/ICAN Seattle, consider becoming a member or renewing now.

Join or renew now!

Welcome to ICAN Seattle!

ICAN’s Mission Statement

ICAN’s mission is to prevent unnecessary cesareans through education, to provide support for cesarean recovery, and to promote VBAC.

ICAN’s Vision Statement

A healthy reduction of the cesarean rate driven by women making evidence-based, risk appropriate childbirth decisions.

Please browse our website to find out information on local support.

Modern medicine increasingly intervenes in the birth process

Journalist Mary Beth Pfeiffer knocks another one out of the park with her second article in the Poughkeepsie Journal, Modern medicine increasingly intervenes in the birth process which examines the role modern medicine and interventions have placed in decreasing the gestational age at which babies are arriving!  pregnancy-calculator

“In the decade through 2002, something momentous happened to babies in the wombs of American women, especially white women. The average time fetuses spent there decreased from 40 weeks to 39.

The decline, reported in a 2006 study in the medical journal Seminars in Perinatology, appears to have little to do with nature.

Instead, earlier births may be the outcome of “increased use of induction (of labor) and other obstetric interventions such as cesarean delivery,” said a January report by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control. Prematurity rose 20 percent since 1990, the report said, and the rate of low birth-weight babies hit a 40-year high.

“We are shortening the gestational age,” said Dr. Carol Sakala, program director for the research and advocacy group Childbirth Connection. “That is a big interference with mammalian evolution, human evolution.”

Is it possible that modern medicine, in a few short years, has managed to override the powerful and significant forces of evolution!

Birth by surgery: The skyrocketing cesarean rate

The Poughkeepsie Journal ran a great article, Birth By Surgery: The skyrocketing Cesarean Rate, by journalist, Mary Beth Pfeiffer recently that lamented the increasing rate of cesarean births, and shared the story of a woman in NY who had an unnecessary surgery for a suspected large baby and went on to have a vaginal birth with her second child.  Pfeiffer hits on all the hot topics, including defensive medicine, lack of options for VBAC women, malpractice concerns and malpractice insurance costs, benefits and risks to women and babies and more!  a-guide-to-pregnancy-complications-ga-7

From the article….”Two weeks before Kristi Ashley gave birth to a son in 2007, an ultrasound exam estimated the baby at a hefty 12 pounds, 10 ounces — too big, her doctor believed, for a safe vaginal delivery. After the child weighed in at 9 pounds, 4 ounces in the delivery room, Ashley came to believe that the planned cesarean section she had, with its attendant pain, long recovery and what she called “emotional damage,” may have been a rush to judgment.”

This is a worthwhile read, and most interesting are the comments published by readers after the article’s publicication!  Check it out and let us know your thoughts!

April is Cesarean Awareness Month!

April is Cesarean Awareness Month!  This is an opportunity to share with friends, colleagues, relatives and birth professionals that you come in contact with the impact of unnecessary cesareans on mom, baby, family, society, etc!  Tell your stories, provide resources and evidence based information, (lots of info here on our site,  or steer people to the ICAN National Site) and a tell the world the impact your cesarean birth has had on you!  Consider writing your birth story (Cesarean or other…) for the next edition of ICAN Seattle’s birth story book.

As referenced on the ICAN website, the Cesarean Awareness Ribbon debuted in April of 2004 for Cesarean Awareness Month. The burgundy color of the ribbons represents birth and the wearing of the ribbon upside down symbolizes the state of distress many pregnant women find themselves in when their birthing choices are limited. The loop of the inverted ribbon represents a pregnant belly and the tails are the arms of a woman outstretched in a cry for help.  cam_small1

And finally, consider joining ICAN as a member!  During the month of April, there are special membership prices for anyone joining or renewing their ICAN membership.  Membership in ICAN is a tangible way of demonstrating your support for ICAN and Cesarean Awareness, allows ICAN to continue it’s outreach programs and advocacy and also supports our local Seattle Chapter!  Join directly through ICAN Seattle, and our chapter benefits with additional funds staying in our chapter treasury!  Becoming an ICAN supporting suscriber is only $25 for an entire year of membership, $5 off, in honor of Cesarean Awareness Month.  Contact the ICAN Seattle chapter leaders to subscribe through our local chapter!

CDC Data for 2007 Released – Cesarean Rates Continue to Rise

The CDC has just released preliminary birth statistics for 2007, and the cesarean rate in the US has gone up again, for the 11th consecutive year, and is now at 31.8% of all births. The rate in Washington State has risen about half a percentage point from the 2006 numbers to a current 29.0% of all births. New Jersey takes #1 with a 38.3% cesarean rate, up almost an entire percentage point over the previous year. None of this is surprising information, but it does give one pause to wonder just what is going to be an attention-grabbing ENOUGH statistic to effect change in maternity care?


ICAN has issued a press release about this new data as have several other organizations, including Lamaze International

The History of VBACs and Cesareans in the USA

Another fantastic post by The Well Rounded Mama! A History of VBACs and Cesareans in the USA

A must read for anyone trying to figure out how we ended up were we are today, in the land of the VBAC Ban.

I really love what this VBAC mama blogger has to say! And I love that she provides all the evidence to support it! Enjoy!

“The Problem Is Only Beginning To Mushroom”

“The problem is only beginning to mushroom,” stated Carolyn Zelop, ACOG member,in regards to the increasing risk of cesarean deliveries. She was interviewed for the recent Time article, “The Trouble with Repeat Cesareans.”

I have linked to the study Zelop was referring to on our Resource Index page, but am quoting from the abstract here:

RESULTS: The prevalence of delivery hospitalizations (per 1,000) complicated by at least one severe obstetric complication increased from 0.64% (n_48,645) in 1998-1999 to 0.81% (n_68,433) in 2004–2005. Rates of complications that increased significantly during the study period included renal failure by 21% (from 0.23 to 0.28), pulmonary embolism by 52% (0.12 to 0.18), adult respiratory distress syndrome by 26% (0.36 to 0.45), shock by 24% (0.15 to 0.19), blood transfusion by 92% (2.38 to 4.58), and ventilation by 21 % (0.47 to 0.57). In logistic regression models, adjustment for maternal age had no effect on the increased risk for these complications in 2004–2005 relative to 1998–1999. However, after adjustment for mode of delivery, the increased risks for these complications in 2004–2005 relative to 1998–1999 were no longer significant, with the exception of pulmonary embolism (odds ratio 1.30) and blood transfusion (odds ratio 1.72). Further adjustment for payer, multiple births, and select comorbidities had little effect.
CONCLUSION: Rates of severe obstetric complications increased from 1998–1999 to 2004–2005. For many of these complications, these increases were associated with the increasing rate of cesarean delivery.

As the cesarean rate in the USA races higher by the day, indeed we must be headed toward some sort of explosion! Implosion? I don’t know what to call it, but Zelog’s reference to a “mushroom” brings to mind the image of a nuclear explosion. And that scares me! A lot!