C-section complications: Know the side effects of cesarean delivery for mother and baby

Cesarean delivery is one of the methods that helps deliver baby. Here are the complications of cesarean delivery you should know.
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Know the complications of cesarean delivery for mother and the baby. Image Courtesy: Adobe Stock
Dr Rushali Jadhav Published: 20 Dec 2022, 01:30 pm IST
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Childbirth has now become safer with advancements in healthcare and technology. Normal delivery is one of the safest methods of childbirth, but even cesarean birth (commonly known as a C-section) and aided normal delivery (using suction or forceps) have become common. However, in some cases, C-section delivery can lead to certain complications which you should know about.

What is a cesarean delivery?

Cesarean delivery or C-section is a process of removing a baby from the womb through abdominal and uterine incisions. When normal delivery is not possible or includes numerous problems, a cesarean surgery can be planned well in advance.

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Know all about the complications of cesarean delivery. Image Courtesy: Shutterstock

Planned cesareans are known as elective cesarean sections. They are usually carried out when the baby is in the breech position (feet first). A surgical procedure that is performed when there is an immediate threat to the life of a fetus and/or woman is known as an emergency cesarean section.

Also Read: New moms, follow these do’s and dont’s if you’ve had a C-section delivery

Types of C-section delivery based on the dissection method:

Cesarean section may be classified as a lower-segment transverse cesarean section (a horizontal cut through the abdomen and a horizontal cut through the lower part of the uterus) or classical cesarean section (which refers to a vertical cut on the uterus. The abdominal cut may be vertical or horizontal. This type of incision is usually only used for extreme emergencies or in specific situations, such as if the placenta is lying very low or if the baby is lying sideways.

Also Read: 5 things you should not do to a newborn baby

Complications of cesarean delivery

Cesarean delivery can be a difficult and risky process for both the mother and the child. Some of the common risks involved in the procedure for mothers are-

Blood loss

A C-section might cause heavy bleeding during and after delivery and the hypotension can further cause dizziness and loss of consciousness which is a very dangerous complication.

Reactions to anaesthesia

Reactions to any type of anaesthesia are possible depending on the person and their medical history.

Pregnant women might face anesthesia allergy during cesarean delivery. Image courtesy: Shutterstock


There are risks involved of developing an infection on the lining of the uterus (endometriosis), in the urinary tract, or at the site of the incision.

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Increased risks during future pregnancies

The more C-sections, the higher the risks of placenta previa and a condition in which the placenta becomes attached to the wall of the uterus (placenta accreta).

Blood clots

Blood clots might develop inside a deep vein, especially in the legs or pelvis (deep vein thrombosis). The damage might be fatal if a blood clot enters the lungs and prevents blood flow (pulmonary embolism).

Risk of cesarean delivery for babies

The risks for cesarean delivery to babies include:

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Complications of cesarean delivery for newborns. Image Courtesy: Shutterstock

Breathing problems

Babies born via a cesarean procedure are more likely to develop a breathing issue that causes them to breathe too fast for a few days after birth. This is called transient tachypnea.

Surgical injury

The risk of accidental nicks to the baby’s skin is present during surgery.

Despite having many complications, a cesarean process can be an effective and quick delivery process if proper attention and care are taken by the doctors.

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About the Author

Dr Rushali Jadhav is a consultant of obstetrics and gynaecology at Manipal Hospitals, Kharadi, Pune. ...Read More

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