When a woman thinks about having her first child, she often imagines the type of birth seen in the movies. The experience of natural childbirth, though painful, is memorable and beautiful. However, what most women don’t realize is roughly 30% of all babies in the United States are delivered by cesarean birth (c-section).
With almost four million babies being born annually in our country, it can be easy to take for granted the seriousness of childbirth. The process, either natural or by c-section, can be very traumatic for the mother and the child depending on the circumstances.
During pregnancy, your doctor may determine it is important for the safety of you and your unborn child to schedule a c-section.
The following are potential medical reasons your obstetrician may schedule a cesarean birth:
- Baby is in breech and breech cannot be prevented
- Mother is giving birth to multiples
- Baby is so large he or she cannot safely travel through birth canal
- Baby has an illness or condition that will be exasperated by the birth process
- Mother has preeclampsia or eclampsia
- The placenta is blocking the cervical opening or has separated from the uterine wall
- Mother has had a c-section previously
However, not all c-sections are planned. Because of the risks associated with a c-section, doctors often avoid the procedure unless it is absolutely necessary for the safety of the mother and child. Sometimes doctors can’t determine the need for a c-section until after labor has started, and that is when they must perform an emergency c-section.
Obstetricians are trained to know when an emergency c-section is necessary to prevent danger to the mother and child.
Your doctor may choose to perform an emergency c-section when:
- The cervix fails to dilate after a certain number of hours has passed (this number is higher for first-time mothers)
- Process declines, and eventually stops, after the early stages of labor
- Baby’s head is too large to fit through the pelvis
- Mother becomes overly distressed
- Fetal monitor shows that baby has become overly distressed
- Umbilical cord slips into birth canal before baby (can compress and cut off oxygen to the baby)
- Mother experiences uterine rupture
Whether your c-section is scheduled or unexpected, it can be necessary to save your life and the life of your baby. If you think your doctor should consider delivering your baby by cesarean birth, make sure you ask a lot of questions and discuss your options. It is important you feel safe and prepared for the birth of your child.
If your doctor failed to perform a necessary c-section, and you or your baby were injured as a result, you have to call me right away at 1 (800) 556-4769.
Author: Tim Misny | For 33 years, personal injury lawyer Tim Misny has represented the injured victim in birth injury, medical malpractice, and catastrophic injury/wrongful death cases, serving “Cleveland, Akron/Canton, Columbus & Cincinnati, Ohio.” You can reach Tim by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call at 1 (800) 556-4769.