Your gynaecologist would suggest you to for a C-section (Caesarean section) delivery when the baby is not in a position to come out naturally or when there is an emergency to take out the baby. There are 2 ways in which the incision is made on the abdomen:
- A classic cut – vertically between the belly button and the pubic area
- A horizontal cut or bikini cut – horizontally just under the bikini line.
Both of these incisions are likely to make a scar on your abdomen and how the recovery looks depend on whether it is horizontal or vertical. Vertical incisions are usually made in emergency situations when the doctor needs to get to the baby and take him/her out on an urgent basis. In other situations, a horizontal cut is made. Vertical cuts are more painful and take longer to heal. The scar left by a vertical cut is more prominent than the one left with a horizontal cut.
C-section and your health
C-section involves two major incisions:
- Incision on the abdominal area
- Incision to the uterus
Along with these, many tissues and nerves need to be cut and disturbed during the surgery. If you underwent caesarean surgery to deliver your baby, you need to be very careful while you heal and need to follow your gynaecologist’s instructions religiously.
Watch out for possible infections.
Possibility of an infection in the incision site can be expected if proper antibiotics are not taken and the site is not cleaned and dressed properly. You should get in touch with your gynaecologist immediately if
- The incision keeps hurting even after a couple of days after surgery
- If the pus (or a mixture of pus and blood) keeps oozing out of the surgery site
- If you run a fever that is over 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit.
Possibility of nerve damage during the surgery
An experienced or trained gynaecologist will be performing the surgery with utmost care so that the main nerves are not damaged during the incision process or when taking the baby out. Most of the time, the nerves affected in this region heal and you may lose sensation during the healing process temporarily. If the numbness continues for longer period along with pain in abdomen and legs, that could indicate a nerve damage.
When the C-section scar is healing, the incision site can become thick, raised and red. This is called hypertrophic scarring. Hypertrophic scarring is caused as the body produces more scar tissue than required to heal. Though this is not a bad thing, you may not feel comfortable wearing certain types of clothes.
Treatment of Caesarean scars
You don’t need to live with caesarean scars anymore. There are ample options out there provided by cosmetic gynaecologists who can make the scars nearly disappear. Following are some of the treatment options for removing caesarean scars at DG Laser & Cosmetic Gynaecology Clinic, Chennai:
- Silicone treatment – Silicone has shown good results in minimizing surgical scars but this is a longer process. Applying silicone gel or silicone sheet / tape on the scar can help breakdown the scar tissue and eventually the scar becomes very light. This method is preferred when the scar is small in size.
- Steroid injections – Steroid injections are used when the scars are bigger. Steroid injections can help flatten the area so that the scar isn’t easily visible. This is not a onetime thing; you need to keep visiting your cosmetic gynaecologist regularly to take the injections.
- Laser therapy to lighten c-section scars – Medical lasers can lighten the scars, even if they are few months old. This is an advanced procedure and you need to undergo multiple sessions to see visible results.
- Scar revision surgery – When no other treatment has helped, your gynaecologist may recommend you to go for scar revision surgery. In this surgery, the incision is made again, the scar tissue is removed and then the body is allowed to heal again. If the scar tissue is produced in the right amount, the scar’s visibility will be lighter than before and once healed, other treatment options may be tried to lighten it further.
How do you prevent caesarean scars?
Unless you go for natural vaginal birth, preventing or avoiding caesarean scars is not possible. But, taking proper care of the incision site after getting it stitched up can help a lot in quicker healing and leaving less visible scar.
- Wash the incision with clean water (in standing position, so that the water just flow away) and apply antiseptic cream or ointment as suggested by your doctor.
- Don’t put any stress/pressure on your abdomen – avoid bending, moving or lifting weights other than your baby.
- Keep yourself hydrated. Skin has an excellent elastic property and you need to support it by drinking lots of water and fluids to keep yourself hydrated. Eat health and stay healthy at least until the incision site is completely healed.
- Avoid smoking – Smoking can hinder recovery process of the body, so, either stop smoking during recovery or quit smoking.
With the advancement in technology, minimizing caesarean scars is possible now. You can return your abdomen shape and look to pre-delivery stage with our cosmetic solutions. If you want to get your c-section scar to be looked at by Chennai’s finest cosmetic gynaecologist, Dr Deepa Ganesh, please fill in the form or call us at +91 98401 65658.