Originally Posted by Charles Baudelaire
Given the small discrepancy of .02% between maternal mortality rates (.02 to .04%) for VBAC to c-section versus the much larger difference to the baby of .25% (from a .38% chance of death to the .13% chance) for the c-section
The discrepancy between maternal morality rates for VBAC vs. ERCS is (out of 10,000) 2 vs. 4. 4 is 2 times 2; that is, 200%, or twice the risk.
The discrepancy between child's mortality rates for ERCS vs. VBAC is (out of 10,000) 38 vs. 13. 38 is 2.92 times 13; that is, 292%, or almost three times the risk.
The difference between 2.92 and 2 is a lot less than the difference between 25 and 2. The figure of 25 that you arrived at has some limited validity inasmuch as that many more children die per 10,000, but it's not that much more of a percentage of 13 than 4 is of 2. The relative proportions are not that different.
(I hope I am explaining this OK. This is all just arithmetic I remember from high school; I don't know anything about the actual science of statistics. I hope someone who does know will come along. I find the apparent absence of such a person from these 'cesarean risk' threads very frustrating. 'Cause the one thing I do know about statistics is it's more complicated than it looks, and I suspect these back of the envelope type calculations aren't really getting us too far.)
But anyway, as far as I can tell, it comes down to whether you prefer to tolerate (almost) three times the risk to the child, or two times the risk to the mother.
Assuming this is hypothetical, I am curious why you are mixing up the separate ethical problem of surrogacy/autonomy/"who decides" with the question of maternal vs. fetal risks. Are you just trying to highlight the conflict of interest between child and maternal outcomes, or....? ISTM like we need to figure out what's really going on with the stats before it would be useful to get into any specific ethical scenarios.