Trends of caesarean section rates in Turkey

Santas G., ŞANTAŞ F.

JOURNAL OF OBSTETRICS AND GYNAECOLOGY, vol.38, no.5, pp.658-662, 2018 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 38 Issue: 5
  • Publication Date: 2018
  • Doi Number: 10.1080/01443615.2017.1400525
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.658-662
  • Keywords: Caesarean section, trends, demographic and health survey, developing countries, healthcare, Turkey, IMMIGRANT WOMEN, DELIVERY, BRAZIL, EXPERIENCES, MORBIDITY, BIRTH, RISK, AGE
  • Yozgat Bozok University Affiliated: Yes


The aims of this study was to determine the trends in rates of caesarean sections in Turkey. The data source for this study was the Turkey Demographic and Health Survey (TDHS) 1993-1998-2003-2008-2013 conducted by Hacettepe University, Institute of Population Studies. Cross tables and binary logistic regression were used for analysis. It was found that the caesarean section rate, which was 14.3% in 1993, increased to 51.9% in 2013. The rate increased with maternal age and educational level at childbirth. The Caesarean section rate was higher in women who were under health insurance coverage, first time mothers, childbirth in the private health institutions, those staying in the Western region and urban areas, and having the highest level of wealth. This study aims to contribute to the literature of caesarean sections especially in developing countries, in which caesarean section has become a major healthcare issue.Impact StatementWhat is already known on this subject: Caesarean section is among the most widely practiced obstetric surgery worldwide. Previous studies have suggested that the rates of caesarean section were affected by the biological, genetic and medical factors.What the results of this study add: Besides the biological, genetic and medical factors, it is believed that social factors (income and social status, education, employment, etc.) play an important role on the caesarean section in developing countries. Although the laws on caesarean sections have been enforced since 2012 in Turkey, this study shows that there has been a significant increase in caesarean section between the 1993 and 2013 periods. The study also reveals that prohibiting caesarean sections, except in cases of medical necessity, is a problematic issue in the health system despite all efforts.What the implications are of these findings for clinical practice and/or further research: This study may be of interest for authorities and researchers in terms of showing the social factors associated with the caesarean section.