Caesarian section is a surgery done to deliver the baby through the abdomen. In most cases it takes about an hour for the surgery and your spouse or partner may be allowed to stay with you in the operating room during the procedure. Having an idea of what is done during caesarian section can make you better prepared for the surgery. Read to know how the C-section is performed.
[Read: Why to have a Caesarean Section?]
Preparation for C-section: Before the C-section, your abdomen and genitals will be cleaned and if needed shaved. A tube (catheter) is usually placed into your bladder to drain the urine. It may be kept in place for about 24 hours after the surgery. A member of the health care team will place an IV lines in a vein in your hand or arm. This is used to give fluid and medications as needed.
Anesthesia for C-section: C-section can be done under general or regional anesthesia. However regional anesthesia is most often used for C-sections. During regional anesthesia the lower part of your body becomes numb to pain and touch with the medications but you remain awake during the procedure. The medications are injected directly into the sac surrounding your spinal cord. General anesthesia may be given in case of an emergency. After this anesthesia you go to sleep and won't be able to see, feel or hear anything during the procedure.
Incision for delivery: An incision is made through the abdominal wall and then the uterine wall to deliver the baby. The abdominal incision is usually made horizontally near the pubic hairline (bikini incision). Rarely the incision is made vertical-- from just below the navel to just above the pubic bone. The uterine incision is usually made horizontally (across the lower portion of the uterus). Other types of uterine incisions are used in case of some complication, such as the baby's position is abnormal within the uterus, placental complication (placenta previa — when the placenta partially or completely blocks the uterus).
Delivery by C-section: After the incision is made through the abdomen and uterus the baby is gently taken out from your uterus. If you are given regional anesthesia you will be able to hear and see the baby soon after delivery. The baby's mouth and nose is cleaned after the head is delivered and then the umbilical cord is clamped and cut. After the baby is delivered the placenta is removed from the uterus. Following this the incisions on the uterus and abdomen are closed with sutures.
In case of real emergency cesarean time from incision to delivery can be as less as about 2-5 minutes and in case of planned procedure a cesarean birth can take 10 to 15 minutes. After the baby is delivered about 45 minutes are needed to deliver the placenta and suture the incisions (in the uterus and skin).After C-section delivery you will be discharged from the hospital to go home in 3 to 4 days. It takes about 4 weeks or more after a cesarean for the incision to heal completely.
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