I dont know but I was scared to death of being cut and my dr. (a fill in) did it without even telling me. My husband watched and said he went from one hole all the way to the other (tmi I know). And mann could I feel it. It took him about 30 minutes to stitch me up and I could see just how far he cut me. There was NO way I needed that. I had been pushing for 10 minutes ON MY BACK when he decided to do this... no decline in heart rate or anything. The next push, her whole body came out cause I was so cut up. UGH makes me mad!
IA that it is advertising. I hear that women who've had episiotomies have more issues with sensations down below.
I definitely agree that lithotomy position and forcing mom to push are detrimental and can cause or worsen tearing. Ouch!!!
ETA: I was going to ask if the average ob was doing perineal massages or some other technique to prevent tearing, but I think I already know the answer.