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The actual Caesarean operation

The actual Caesarean operation


WARNING: The following information describes an actual operation and shows black and white images of a baby being born by Caesarean. You may wish to skip some or all of this section.

The actual operation.

The following information describes the surgical procedures involved in performing a lower segment Caesarean section (or LSCS) operation. This is the most common type of Caesarean that is currently performed.

The incisions

The birth

The placenta

Stitches

The incisions.

The first cut is made through the skin, horizontally across the top of the woman's bikini line just under the pubic hairline. The incision is usually about 15 to 20cm long. This incision exposes the woman's abdominal muscles, which are two long muscles that lie vertically from her pubic bone up to her breastbone.

The abdominal muscles naturally meet in a line up the middle of the woman's belly, (these muscles normally separate slightly during the pregnancy). The abdominal muscles are gently pulled to each side of the woman's body by the surgeon. This action exposes the woman's bladder, which sits low, in front of the uterus. The bladder is moved down out of the way with an instrument called a 'retractor' and the lower segment of the uterus can then be visualised by the surgeon.

At this point a 10 to 12 cm incision is made horizontally, across the lower segment of the uterus (usually similar to the incision on the skin). When this happens the amniotic fluid from around the baby gushes out. The surgeon's assistant will use a small suction tube to collect this fluid as it flows out (this may be heard as a loud liquid 'sucking sound', similar to the sound you would hear as the bath tub empties). After the incision is made into the uterus, the baby's shoulder (or lower back if breech) can clearly be seen in the uterus.


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