Cord prolapse - Sometimes the umbilical cord, which connects the baby to the placenta, comes through the birth canal. This is an emergency situation, as the baby’s blood supply, and hence its oxygen, may be cut off. An emergency Caesarean section may be the safest way to deliver the baby if an assisted delivery cannot be performed.
The aim is to deliver your baby safely and make sure you come to no harm.
You should safely and quickly return to normal health. You and your baby will avoid undue trauma or distress.
Are there any alternatives?
Any possible alternatives depend on the reason for you needing a Caesarean. You should discuss these issues with your obstetrician.
What if you do nothing?
If you have a pregnancy complication and refuse a Caesarean your baby may suffer trauma or distress, leading to permanent brain damage or even death. If the labour is left too long you may suffer a ruptured uterus, damage to your vagina, bladder and other organs in the pelvis or possibly death. However, you have the right to refuse a Caesarean section. It is important to carefully discuss all the options with your obstetrician.
Author: Dr Chineze Otigbah MRCOG. Consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist.
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