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What is an unplanned or emergency caesarean section?

A caesarean section may be required if: your labor is not progressing as planned - for example, if the contractions are too weak or your baby's heart rate is abnormal and indicating a problem; your baby is in a breech (bottom or feet-first) or transverse (sideways) position when the labor begins; there is placental abruption, which occurs when the placenta separates from the uterus before the baby is born. This can cause heavy vaginal bleeding; the umbilical cord has fallen through (prolapsed) the cervix and into the vagina. This can be dangerous as the umbilical cord carries oxygenated blood to your baby which can be restricted during a prolapse, and; there is a medical emergency, for example, a car accident involving trauma, which forces a caesarean delivery to be performed.

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About this article

Author: Dr Nikki Wallis PhD, BSc
First answered: 27 Oct 2014
Last reviewed: 19 May 2018
Rating: 4.3 out of 5
Votes: 314 (Click smiley face below to rate)
Category: Labor

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