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Most deliveries are vaginal and occur naturally. But, sometimes, when the baby has difficulty getting out and with the help of instruments such as forceps (similar to two large spoons that are used for the doctor to pick up the baby's head and, very carefully, pull it out) or the vacuum pump (a device that is placed on the baby's head and pulled out) does not deliver the baby, other routes are required for delivery.
Cesarean section is always the last resort when, due to some problem, it is impossible to carry out a vaginal delivery. Cesarean delivery involves making a cut or incision in the abdomen and uterus to facilitate delivery of the baby.
Normally, cesarean sections are performed in a special operating room for this type of intervention, and they usually obey the following procedures:
- Application of general or local anesthesia (epidural or spinal), depending on the urgency. The epidural will make you numb from your waist to your feet.
- Placement of a thin tube called a catheter into the bladder to drain urine during surgery.
- Inserting a needle into a vein in the hand or arm to administer fluids during the operation and medications if necessary.
- Shaving and washing the abdomen.
- Horizontal cut or incision above the pubic bone, after it is observed that you are anesthetized. Sometimes a vertical cut is needed; it will depend on the position of the baby or the placenta.
- Incision in the wall of the uterus.
- Removal of the baby from the amniotic sac.
- Separation and removal of the placenta.
- Closure of incisions. Typically, the cesarean delivery process takes 45 minutes to an hour.
If the mother evolves well, she can hold her baby in her arms already in the delivery room. Recovery is slower than if it were a vaginal delivery. You may have to spend two to three days in the hospital, then rest at home for four to six weeks.
Most C-sections are unexpected, but if there is something you can do to prevent it, it is called care. If you take good care of yourself during pregnancy, it is very likely that you will not need to go under the knife. Recommendations that can help you:
- Control well all care at the beginning of pregnancy.
- Maintain a good physical condition, leading a healthy lifestyle, that is, controlling your weight, for example.
- Watch for any signs that may indicate a problem during pregnancy.
- Establish open and healthy communication with your doctor.
- Drink a lot of liquids.
- Walk and exercise moderately.
These cares are basic and can help youat the time of delivery. But following them doesn't mean you'll avoid a cesarean delivery 100 percent. It is important to note that a C-section is major surgery and should only be performed when the health of the mother or baby is in danger. This option should not be used for the convenience of the physician or parents or for any other non-medical reason.
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