C-section Scar – Delivery, Procedure, Healing, Recovery Time, Pictures

C-sections scars are caused due to Cesarean delivery/childbirth, which is also referred to as C-section delivery.

C-section childbirth is a surgical procedure wherein the newborn is delivered via an incision in the mother’s abdomen and another incision in the uterus.Pregnant women can prepare in advance by educating themselves about a C-section procedure and aftercare.

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Why is a C-section delivery done?

Doctors may recommend a C-section delivery instead of a vaginal delivery in the following circumstances:

  • Diminished supply of oxygen to the baby
  • Stalled labor wherein the cervix does not open sufficiently even after many strong contractions, or if the baby’s head is too large to get through the birth canal.
  • The baby is in an abnormal position, i.e. sideways, or if the buttocks or feet have first entered the birth canal.
  • Problems with the placenta, such as placenta previa or placental abruption
  • If the mother is carrying twins, triplets, etc.
  • The mother is a patient of certain health problems like hypertension or cardiac conditions, or presence of infections like genital herpes
  • Presence of problems with the umbilical cord
  • Presence of certain health anomalies like hydrocephalus in the baby

Some women may opt/choose for a C-section delivery to avoid the complications associated with vaginal delivery.

C-section Delivery: Associated Risks

Mothers can take a long time to recover from C-section childbirth as compared to vaginal delivery. Also, like all other surgical procedures C-section delivery comes with the following risks:

  • The mother may experience excessive bleeding, infection and inflammation of the uterus membrane linings, formation of blood clots, adverse reactions to anesthesia, surgical trauma or injuries, infection of the resultant wound, and elevated risks or complications during subsequent pregnancies such as the life-threatening uterine rupture.
  • The baby is at risk to surgical injuries like accidental cuts on the skin, and respiratory problems such as transient tachypnea, respiratory distress syndrome, etc.

C-section Delivery: Before, During, and After

  • Prenatal care involving blood tests, verifying the health of the baby and the mother, etc. are usual before any type of childbirth.

During a C-section procedure

Most C-sections finish within an hour. Mothers need to bathe with an antibacterial soap the night before, and on the morning of the surgery to lower the risk to infections. Avoid shaving pubic hair for two days before the C-section.

  • In the delivery room, the doctor will cleanse the abdomen, place a bladder catheter for urine collection, and administer intravenous medications and fluids.
  • Regional or general anesthesia is given as per the individual situations
  • The doctor will make an incision in the abdomen and then in the uterus.He/she will then gently remove the baby.

After a C-section procedure

 The baby and mother are kept in the hospital for three or more days. Pain medications may be given to the mother. You may also be monitored for signs of infection and encouraged to move around so as to prevent blood clots, constipation, and other complications. Consult with the doctor about when you can begin breast feeding.

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  • C-section incision scars take about 6 weeks to fully heal. During this period mothers should take rest whenever possible, drink lots of fluids, and generally take it easy. Support the abdomen during coughing, sneezing, and other such sudden movements. Consult the doctor before having sex again.
  • Women need to seek immediate medical attention when they experience high fever; redness, discharge, or swelling at the incision site; intense abdominal pain, and/or other signs of infection.
  • They should also visit a doctor if affected by painful urination, smelly vaginal discharge, leg swelling or pain, breast pain along with fever and redness, signs of postpartum depression, or any kind of health problem.

C-section scar: Healing and Recovery Tips

Infection of the C-section wound is one of the most common causes of C-section scars formation. Such scars tend to remain unsightly and large. Hence, women can follow the steps given below (after consulting their health care providers) to take care of the incision wounds and reduce the risk to development of C-section scars:

  • Intake of a healthy and balanced diet during and after pregnancy will reduce the risk to infections, thereby decreasing the vulnerability to C-section scars development.
  • Swelling and pain tends to persist for a couple of days post-surgery. Ice packs may be applied regularly to alleviate the swelling. Consult a doctor if pain and swelling continue beyond two days.
  • Observe the incisions and C-section scars on a daily basis for signs of any abnormality as listed above. Seek immediate medical help if you notice any adverse symptoms.
  • After consulting a doctor, gently bathe and clean the wound site on a daily basis.
  • After the wound has completely healed, apply scar treatment creams, vitamin E oil, cucumber, and/orAloe Vera to reduce the C-section scars. Healing typically occurs in about 6 to 8 weeks, but C-section scars may take at least six months to completely disappear.
  • Unresolved instances of C-section scars can be treated with prescription or OTC silicone gels or sheets. They can be placed on the scars along with additional pressure.
  • Laser surgery is another option available for treatment of unresolved C-section scars.

C-Section Scar Pictures

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