Giving birth: Cesarean birth
In a Cesarean birth, your baby is born through an incision (surgical cut) in your abdomen. The surgery takes about an hour. Your baby is born five to 10 minutes after the surgery begins. The rest of the time is needed to remove the placenta and repair the incisions. A Cesarean birth can happen with any pregnancy.
Planned Cesarean birth
You may have a planned Cesarean birth. This means that you and your health care provider know before your labor begins that this is the way your baby will be born. A Cesarean birth might be planned if:
- you've previously had a Cesarean
- you've had complications in a previous birth
- your baby is breech (your baby's buttocks and/or feet are closest to the cervix)
- you have placenta previa (the placenta is covering some or all of the cervix).
If you know you will be having a Cesarean, talk with your health care provider about the reason. Ask all of your questions and raise all of the concerns you have. Consider
asking your husband, partner, family member, or a friend to come to that visit.
Unplanned Cesarean birth
You may have an unplanned, emergency Cesarean. This might happen because of your baby's position, size or health, or because of your own health. A decision for
an unplanned Cesarean birth can occur over several hours or happen quickly.
If it happens quickly, you may not feel that you've had enough time to ask questions or adjust to this new idea. In an emergency, you may be prepped for surgery quickly
and be unconscious during the birth. It is important to talk with your health care provider after the surgery so that your questions can be answered and your feelings addressed.
What to expect during your Cesarean birth
- Identification bracelets will be placed on your baby's ankle and/or wrist, your wrist, and your labor companion's wrist.
- You and your labor companion will probably be able to touch and hold your baby and take pictures. It will be hard for you to hold your baby while you are on the
- Your baby will be taken to a nursery or your birthing room. Your partner can go with your baby.
- After your incisions are closed, you will be taken to a recovery area. Later, you will go to your room.