When is a C-section conducted for delivery?
There are several reasons for conducting a C-section. If the doctor finds that the passage for a normal delivery is difficult, he or she has no choice but to operate to deliver the baby. This is called C-section. Vaginal delivery may not be possible for other reasons, too. If the baby is large or if the pelvic size is slightly small, a C-section is preferred.
How is the C-section procedure carried out?
C-section is done through abdominal surgery. The lower abdomen is opened to reach the uterus. First, there is a skin layer to be cut, then there is another layer, then there is a muscle layer, there is rector sheath, then you get into the abdominal cavity. Then you open the uterus and take the baby out. Of course, there are certain safety protocols to be followed for the safety of the baby and the mother.
How is C-section surgery today different from what it was a decade ago?
Not much of a difference. The procedure for surgery has improved as also the experience of doctors.
Does C-section cause a lot of pain, scars and cramps?
All that has come down. Over the years, things have improved a lot. In terms of pain, recovery, everything has improved. Today, patients get up in a six-hour time frame, walk around, they have a bath and by next morning they are up and about like on any other day. Sometimes we can send the patient home in about two days’ time. Earlier we used to keep them for eight to ten days.
What are the recovery measures that should be undertaken by a woman who has just undergone a C-section?
Recovery will take its own time, but it will not cause any inconvenience to the mother. Recovery will take some time. The external wound will take about 10-15 days. The internal wound will take 2 to 3 months to completely heal. But, all this does not affect the patient’s mobility. They are almost as normal as before.
Are there any particular activities that should not be undertaken by a mother?
Yes, there are some restrictions, like you cannot bend down, you cannot lift things from the ground, because of the wound. And you cannot travel, or have a regular bath. You will take few days to get back to a normal diet. These are some of the restrictions.
So how does the mother then breastfeed the baby?
Breastfeeding of the baby can begin within 2 to 4 hours of a C-section. In a normal delivery, the mother starts breastfeeding within an hour. Things have changed over the years. Earlier, a mother was not allowed to breastfeed the baby for 24 hours after a C-section.
But why is it becoming such a frequent procedure now? Any particular reason for that?
One of the reasons for it becoming common is the delay in a normal delivery of a baby. A number of children’s problems arise due to the delay in delivering a baby. Like it is causing Anoxia, Asphyxia among others. Delay in delivery causes reduced oxygen supply to the brain. And, we are able to diagnose problems much earlier. It is primarily to prevent complications that doctors sometimes have to resort to a C-section.