A fetus with the feet, buttocks, or legs pointing down toward the cervix is said to be in breech position. Before birth, most breech fetuses change position so that the head points downward, but some breech fetuses stay in breech position late into the third trimester (the last part of pregnancy).
A medical procedure called external cephalic version can sometimes successfully turn a breech fetus to head-down position before delivery. A cesarean section is recommended for most breech deliveries.
Last Revised: July 25, 2011
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review: Sarah Marshall, MD - Family Medicine & William Gilbert, MD - Maternal and Fetal Medicine
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