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C-Section's what are they all about?

With one in four women delivering by caesarean section in the UK, Fellside Physiotherapy, which specialises in women’s health, is keen to highlight C-Section Awareness month by supplying an informative Q & A for parents who want to know more about c-section delivery, one of the world’s oldest surgeries.

Providing a high quality mobile treatment service in Keswick, Cockermouth, Wigton and surrounding villages, Fellside Physiotherapy specialises in Musculoskeletal (MSK) conditions, sporting injuries and women’s health.

Director and Clinical Lead, Emma Marsh MCSP HCPC BSc (Hons) and recent recruit and women’s health specialist, Kirsty Docwra MCSP HCPC BSc (Hons) are committed to providing a bespoke service that can be delivered from the comfort of the client’s home.

“We understand there is a lot to c-section delivery that parents don’t understand and we wanted to take the opportunity to clear things up with a simple Q & A during C-Section Awareness month,” said Kirsty.

Question - “Why might I need a C-Section?”

Answer - “There are many reasons why a C-Section might be necessary among them: breech baby, foetal distress, placenta/umbilical cord complications, multiple births, large baby and if you’ve had a C-section previously.”

Question - “What happens during a C-Section?”

Answer - “Most caesareans are carried out under spinal or epidural anaesthetic which means you'll be awake, but the lower part of your body is numbed so you will not feel any pain. A catheter will be inserted into the bladder to empty it while you’re under epidural.

During the procedure a screen will be placed across your body and the doctors and nurses will let you know what's happening. A cut about 10 to 20cm long will usually be made across your lower tummy (below the bikini line) and womb so your baby can be delivered. You may feel some tugging and pulling during the procedure. Your baby will be shown to you and your partner after delivery and brought to you as soon as possible.

The whole operation normally takes about 40 to 50 minutes.

Occasionally, a general anaesthetic (where you're asleep) may be used, particularly if the baby needs to be delivered more quickly.

Your womb will be closed with dissolvable stitches and the cut to your lower abdomen will be closed with dissolvable stitches that can be removed after a few days.”

Question - “What are the risks of a C-Section?”

Answer - “It is generally a very safe procedure but as with all surgeries there is a risk of infection to the wound and womb lining, which can be common. Much less common is excessive bleeding, and in rare cases Deep Vein Thrombosis and damage bladder can occur.

Risks to the baby are minimal but may include cuts to the skin and breathing difficulties if born before thirty-nine weeks.”

Question - “I’ve had a C-Section, can I have a vaginal delivery next time?”

Answer - “Yes, you can. This is known as a VBAC (vaginal birth after Caesarean). However, there may be occasions when another C-Section may be necessary.”

Question - “What will my recovery look like?”

Answer - “Your C-Section wound will take about six weeks to heal and the scar will fade over time. You may lose feeling in the area around the wound and this can take up to eighteen months to return. Like with any other major abdominal surgery you should take the appropriate time to rehabilitate. C-Section is not an ‘easy option’ and should be treated as major surgery.

DON’T carry out activity that causes strain in the first few weeks. This includes lifting anything heavier than your baby.

DO stay active by walking.

DO start pelvic floor muscle contraction/relaxation exercises as soon as you can.

DON’T exercise for at least six weeks, when it is safe to return to gentle exercise.

DO consider scar massage once your scar has completely healed.

DO consider physiotherapy to help with your post-C-Section rehabilitation. Contact us to discuss your motherhood journey in more detail and find out how we can help!”

You can contact Fellside Physiotherapy by emailing

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