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A caesarean section, or C-section, is surgery to deliver your baby through a cut the doctor makes in your lower belly and uterus. This cut is also called an incision. In many cases, the doctor makes the cut just above the pubic hairline. In other cases, it runs from the belly button to the pubic hairline. Both cuts leave a scar. It most often fades with time.
The surgery may be done while you are awake but your belly is numb. This lets you be awake for the birth of your baby. Less often, women need general anesthesia. This means you are asleep during the surgery.
Most women go home about 3 days after the birth. You may feel better each day. But you will likely need about 6 weeks to fully recover. During the first few weeks you will need extra help with household chores. But you will be able to care for your baby. You can do things like breastfeed and change diapers.
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.
Surgery can be stressful. This information will help you understand what you can expect. And it will help you safely prepare for surgery.
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Current as of: June 16, 2021
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:Sarah Marshall MD - Family Medicine & Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine & Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine
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