CHICAGO (AP) — A large study of first-time moms finds that they are less likely to need a cesarean delivery if labor is induced at 39 weeks rather than waiting for it to start on its own.

The results overturn the longtime view that inducing labor raises the risk for a C-section. Two leading OB-GYN doctor groups say it’s now reasonable to offer that option to women at low risk of birth complications.

Study participants who were induced were less likely to develop dangerous high blood pressure at the end of pregnancy and reported less pain and a greater sense of control. Babies had fewer respiratory problems and spent less time in the hospital.

Results were published Wednesday by the New England Journal of Medicine.

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