Know about C-Sections

Know about C-Sections


Talk to your health care provider

Sometimes a C-section, or cesarean birth is needed because of problems with the mother, baby, or both. Ask questions of your health care
provider, so you are prepared, should you need to have a C-section.

During prenatal visits, ask about:

  • Why you may need a C-section and what the risks and benefits would be compared to labor and vaginal delivery
  • What medicines would be given to reduce the risk of infection or blood clots
  • What anesthesia would be needed

Before having a C-section, ask about:

  • Why the C-section is needed and what you should expect
  • Risks of surgery and anesthesia and when blood transfusions would be needed

When going home after a C-section, ask about:

  • Caring for your incision site to prevent infection
  • Problems or signs of infection, such as warmth or redness at your site, fever, oozing, or site opens that you should report
  • Who to contact if you have a problem
  • What medicines you are to take, how much, and for how long
  • Your follow up appointment

Reasons for C-section

  • Problems before labor
  • Mother has severe bleeding
  • Baby is in distress or not in right position for delivery
  • Baby too big to fit through mother’s pelvis
  • Failure to progress in labor
  • Mother had C-section before

Possible risks with C-section

  • Infection
  • Bleeding or blood clots
  • Need for blood transfusions
  • Injury to bladder or bowels
  • Damage to the uterus that requires removal of the uterus, called a hysterectomy

© 2017 - July 1, 2019, The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center.

This handout is for informational purposes only. Talk with your doctor or healthcare team if you have any questions about your care. For more health information call the Library for Health Information at 614-293-3707 or email: