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Features & Columns

C-Sections May Be Driving Evolution

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C-Sections May Be Driving Evolution

2016-12-05 19:33:16

Why is it so difficult and painful for human females to give birth? Researchers from the Department of Theoretical Biology at the University of Vienna, Austria, have developed a new theory. The believe evolution favored small female pelvises and large newborns for good reasons. According to UPI, the rise of surgical delivery of babies--- known as cesarean sections --- in recent decades may be contributing to an even bigger gap between the size of newborns and their mothers' pelvises. In fact, the researchers estimate that the regular use of C-sections has led to a 10 to 20 percent increase in the gap between female pelvis width and babies' size. The authors of the new study estimate that the growth in cesarean sections over the last 60 years has actually affected evolution by making the gap between pelvic size and newborn size even larger. In recent years, cesarean rates have grown around the world even though there's controversy over how many of them are actually needed. According to the U.S. National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, approximately one in three U.S. births is by cesarean.

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