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Home Wellness Research Birth C-Section Tied to Risk of Allergies

C-Section Tied to Risk of Allergies

Wednesday, 29 October 2008 09:53

Researchers recently unearthed another reason for parents to choose natural childbirth over elective Caesarean section (C-section): allergy prevention.  It seems that C-section delivery may predispose an infant to atopic disease, according to a paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology in Orlando, Florida.

Investigators in Finland analyzed umbilical cord blood from 16 infants delivered via elective C-section and 12 infants delivered vaginally. The study found that cord blood from babies delivered via C-section contained one-third the number of IgA antibodies, compared with controls. In addition, cord blood from infants delivered via C-section had less interleukin 6 and 12. Experts speculate that stress from C-section delivery initiates biochemical changes that make infants more susceptible to allergy. However, the study's authors stress that more research is necessary before a clear link may be established. Specifically, they note that studies involving older children are needed.

Sütas Y.  The role of mode of delivery in atopy: elective caesarean section delivery impairs the capacity to generate IgA and IL 12   American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, 551h Annual Meeting March 15,1999.