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Cesarean Delivery
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Sometimes labor will get to the point where a cesarean section, or a c-section, is advised. Some women know going into their delivery that the c-section is their only option. For other women, the recommendation of a c-section may be unexpected. That’s why you should always keep in the back of your mind the chance you will need to have a c-section, and make the necessary preparations. The c-section may be very quick, due to an emergency, or may not occur until after hours of labor. Every c-section differs depending on the circumstances.

A c-section will be performed for a number of reasons, including:

  • Previous c-section (although many women have normal vaginal births after cesarean sections, there is a risk for uterine rupture and other complications)
  • Preeclampsia
  • Large baby
  • Breech position
  • Chronic disease or condition in mother that can be worsened by stress of labor
  • Genital herpes in mother
  • Placenta blocking cervix
  • It is two or more weeks past intended due date
  • Some instances of multiple births

During the c-section, you will be given an epidural/spinal. In rare circumstances, you will be put to sleep using general anesthesia. If you get an epidural/spinal, a screen will be put up so that you can’t see the procedure happening. Your coach/spouse will be able to stay with you during the procedure if you are awake. But, if you are under a general anesthesia, he or she may be asked to leave the room during the incision and called back in for delivery. The c-section is performed by making incisions into each layer of your skin, abdomen, uterus, etc. until the baby can be removed. You will not feel pain, but you may feel the surgeon moving about.

Click below to read about related topics.

Introduction
What to Expect
Pain & Pain Relief
Doulas
Cesarean Delivery
Breech Birth
Premature Labor & Delivery
Circumcision