Caesarean birth still has risks, and these risks increase with each surgery a mother has, but when we look back over human history, and even over the last half century, medical advances have improved its safety immensely.
It is these improvements, and the skills of all the obstetricians and other maternity care staff involved in caesarean births, that we celebrate during Celebrating Caesareans Week.
Penny Christensen, founder of Birth Trauma Canada, says:
“Competently done, cesareans and regional anesthesia are the biggest medical advancements in obstetrics to date. They should be celebrated as such.”
Pauline Hull, editor of Caesarean Birth, says:
“This is not about ‘promoting’ caesarean birth, but rather appreciating and celebrating the advances in technology and improvements in safety that have saved lives, and provided many women today with choice. We celebrate so many other medical interventions, including IVF’s recent 40th anniversary, yet even though Louise Brown’s birth was a planned caesarean, the benefits of surgical birth are often awarded only begrudging praise, at best, and reserved for ‘precious babies’ or private patients, instead of being communicated more widely.”
Here are just some recent examples of how advances in medical science, including caesarean birth surgery, have saved the lives of some of the most vulnerable babies around the world:
New Zealand, 2017
- Produced by author and journalist Pauline Hull