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Delivery development: Soft C-sections

Delivery development: Soft C-sections (WKRC)

CINCINNATI (WKRC) - A new trend in birthing is now offering parents what some say is a kinder, gentler approach to delivery by cesarean section.

It's now available at several area hospitals including Mercy Health Hospital West. It was a girl for Jamie Lindsay and her husband, Andy. They were expecting that! Little Zelda Faye was healthy and weighed a little more than six pounds.

What they weren't expecting was that mom had to have a C-section.

Jamie Lindsay, Zelda’s mother, said, “I didn't know, it wasn't scheduled. It just kind of happened because of the way she was positioned.”

That meant that rather than delivering in the family birthing room Zelda was born in the operating room. Cesarean delivery requires surgery to open the womb at birth in what must be a sterile environment.

But thanks to the whole new family or soft C-section experience Jamie still got what she wanted, “I pretty much got to see everything, it was a really positive experience.”

Rather than keeping dad out of the operating room, or not allowing immediate skin to skin contact or breastfeeding with mom as a baby would have in a traditional vaginal delivery, Debbie Knapp a family birthing center nurse educator said, “We provide that same experience for them, here in our operating room.”

Knapp showed how a soft C-section works. Mother and father are positioned to be able to see the birth behind a family viewing drape. It can then be rolled down at the proper time.

“And we can help raise her head, and she can now see the birth of her baby and then once you have that baby, the whole point of that soft C-section is that baby comes right back here and can be placed on her chest so she has that skin to skin contact,” said Knapp.

Jamie said, “Just having her on my chest, she stopped crying immediately, it was almost as if she knew who I was and where she wanted to be.”

Officials said it provided many benefits for babies including encouraging breast feeding and helping to relax all vital signs for mom and baby. The goal of a soft C-section is to make the experience as kind and gentle as birth can possibly be.

Both mom and baby do need to be low risk for complications for the soft C-sections. There is no added out of pocket cost for families for the style of delivery.

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