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Why C-Sections Increase Risk for Infection

Written by Berkowitz

c-sections increase infection riskA cesarean section (also referred to as a C-section) is a method for delivering a baby. It is used when vaginal deliveries are not possible or there are risks involved with a vaginal delivery. During the C-section, a surgical incision is made in the mother’s abdomen and the uterus so that the baby can be physically removed.

C-section procedures are scheduled in advance typically before the mother goes into labor, but there are times when they are done in emergencies, due to complications while attempting to deliver the baby normally.



When is a C-Section Required?

Not all situations will call for the use of a C-section. There are, however, circumstances where it is recommended versus vaginal delivery, such as:

  • The mother has undergone a previous C-Section.
  • The mother has undergone one or more C-sections in the past.
  • There is a risk for uterine rupture, due to previous C-sections or other invasive procedures.
  • The delivery will involve more than one baby.
  • The presence of macrosomia, a condition where the baby is considered too large for vaginal delivery.
  • The baby is in the breech position inside the birth canal.
  • There are obstructions, such as fibroids, that make vaginal delivery impossible.
  • There is a malformation or abnormality in the baby that makes vaginal delivery impossible.
  • The mother is HIV-positive and has a high viral load that is too risky for traditional delivery.

Complications of C-Sections

C-sections are rather routine in the United States, but that doesn’t mean that they are free from complications. Even a healthy mother in a scheduled C-section could experience complications that include:

  • Infection – The C-section increases the risk of developing an infection by more than 20 times compared to regular delivery. The infection could occur due to a prolonged delivery process, a uterine incision that was not properly cared for, or for other reasons.
  • Excessive Bleeding – During active labor, 20 to 30 percent of a woman’s blood is pumped by her heart straight to her uterus. When the uterus is then cut open during the C-section, there is a significant amount of blood loss that may occur. If that blood is lost, the uterus could suffer a rupture.
  • Bladder Injury or Infection – During the C-section, a woman is given a catheter, which is inserted into the bladder to remove urine. This is typically left in place for up to 24 hours and then removed later. The longer the catheter stays in place, the higher the risk for infection.
  • Other Injuries – There are instances of malpractice where injuries can occur, such as a delayed C-section, the improper use of surgical instruments, a poor incision in the uterus, failure to manage blood loss, failure to recognize signs of fetal distress, improper management of blood clots and bladder injury.

Seeking Legal Recourse for Your C-Section Injury

If you were seriously injured after your C-section, you may be entitled to compensation. You will need to have your case assessed by a medical malpractice attorney first to determine if negligence was present. Contact Berkowitz and Hanna LLC today to schedule a no-obligation case evaluation.