What’s the safest way to deliver my baby if I’m HIV positive?
That depends on your health and individual circumstances. The decision to have a vaginal birth or a c-section is one to make with your healthcare provider.
Discuss the risks and benefits of each type of delivery with your healthcare team early in pregnancy. It’s an important decision because the risk of passing HIV on to a baby is highest around the time of delivery.
Experts aren’t sure why the risk of spreading the virus is greater during birth. It could be that some of the blood containing the virus crosses the placenta during contractions. Another possibility is that a baby becomes infected from contact with body fluids during birth.
In the past, HIV-positive women were usually advised by their provider to have a c-section. But these days, controlling HIV with antiretroviral therapy (ART) reduces the risk of transmitting