Cesarean section or c-section is a surgical procedure done to deliver your infant instead of the normal vaginal delivery. A general indication for it is when the life of the mother or the baby is in danger.
As a person outside of the medical field you are bound to the management of the Obstetrician, but that does not have to be, a little knowledge will help you understand your condition.
There are two conditions where a c-section is called for; one is planned when the medical condition calls for it or the other may just happen while you are already on the delivery table.
The following conditions may require a planned c-section, the reason being that the condition cannot be altered and doing otherwise will endanger you or your child:
1. Cephalopelvic disproportion (CPD) is a condition when the head of your baby is determined to be too large than your pelvic bones making it impossible to pass through for a vaginal delivery.
2. Placenta previa is a condition where your placenta that gives oxygen and nutrition to your baby is lying near the cervix partially or totally covering it, therefore blocking the passageway for a vaginal delivery.
3. A previous cesarean birth is another indication taking into consideration the type of incision previously done and the space between pregnancies. This is not however definitive because there are women who can deliver via normal birth even after a c-section, however, your obstetrician will be in the best position to decide on this.
4. Multiple pregnancies are another indication taking into consideration the position of the babies inside. If, however, the position of the babies will allow a vaginal birth then it is not a contraindication for vaginal birth.
5. Transverse lie means the baby is lying horizontal or sideways making it impossible for a vaginal delivery.
6. Breech presentation is when the baby is positioned where the feet or bottom is to be delivered first making it difficult for a normal vaginal delivery.
An unplanned c-section on the other hand may be scheduled under the following conditions:
1. When the cervix fails to open fully halting the labor process to progress.
2. When the umbilical cord becomes compressed because it is coiled around the baby’s neck depleting oxygen supply to the baby.
3. When the umbilical cord comes out of the cervix before the baby is out compressing it so that oxygen supply is blocked.
4. Abruptio placenta is a condition when the placenta suddenly separates from the uterus before the delivery of the baby completely halting the oxygen supply.
5. Fetal distress is a condition when the baby becomes stressed which can be measured as an increase or decrease in the heartbeat which can lead to more serious problems both for the mother and baby.
Understand these conditions and be better informed of your pregnancy.