Monday, March 7, 2011

Caesarean Section (CS)

A neighbour of mine recently (about 2 weeks ago) lost her baby few hours after birth. I only got the story behind the loss the day before yesterday. It goes thus. On getting to the hospital, the woman was checked by the doctor and was advised that surgery was the best way to bring the baby out. Her husband agreed but the relatives of the woman who were there as “prayer warriors” disagreed. They argued that the God they serve did not want any evil as Caesarean section being done on their women. They said their faith and prayer will bring forth the baby naturally. The woman obviously listened more to the relatives than the husband and the doctor because she proceeded to “pushing” out the baby who wouldn’t come out (the husband was said to have gone to pick some items at the supermarket). The baby was eventually sucked out by vacuum extraction. It had grown tired and weak by then. It cried and cried and was uncomfortable until it gave up the ghost. The woman hated herself for this and she cried for days. Her sisters woke us all up in the middle of the night with wailings. We all sympathized with her and her family when we got the news. So sad indeed.

Ok, so now we have sympathized with her, but what lesson is there to learn? She had obviously been attending pregnant women’s prayer meetings in her church, speaking to her friends and relatives who may (or may not) have kids before and she got the notion that Caesarean is not a child of God’s portion. “Like the Hebrew women, so shall you bring forth your young IJN”, she would have prayed and be prayed for. We however fail to acknowledge the following questions: What has she been feeding on? What was her weight gain? What was her salt intake? Was she a fat person normally? What was her BMI (Body Mass Index)? Did she go through any form of exercise while she was pregnant? Had she had children previously? Does she have more than one baby inside her? What was her routine while she was pregnant – sit/lie down all day or moving here and there? Has she had previous surgery? All these information give the doctors (specialists) the clue as to what method of birthing will be best suitable to any pregnant woman who has carried a pregnancy up to term. I am able to know all this because I read so much (just any information I could lay hands on) on pregnancy when I got pregnant for my first child and not because I am a medical practitioner (please correct me if I’m wrong ye doctors).

So, I am infuriated with many “uneducated” pastors who tell, educate and convince pregnant women that CS is evil. I know pastors’ wives go through it; bishops’ wives, elders’ wives, deacons’ wives and even female doctors go through it. It was an unnecessary loss like so many others we experience in this nation out of sheer ignorance, carelessness and recklessness. Nowhere was it stated in the bible that surgery is bad. If I have appendicitis, I am not sure there will be an alternative to surgery. It is what has to be done for me to remain healthy. CS is just another simple surgery which eliminates the pushing of the baby out naturally. Yes it cost more than natural birth but the mother and baby being well and alive nullifies all the burdens of the cost (this particular couple could well afford it).

In the developed countries, many women opt for CS because the cost doesn’t scare them (not even a consideration as far as I know). All they care for is health for mother and child. Most women decide (along with their husbands) long before the day of delivery the method of birthing. This is what enlightenment is. We have a duty to inform people (particularly some who may not be as educated, exposed, informed or have access to information as we are). Churches (pregnant women’s groups), maternity homes and birthing centres in have this responsibility more on them.

In the practice of Christianity, the brain should not be left out. We ought to think on particular scenarios and ask God for wisdom for us, for the care-givers and everyone who will be involved in the process of bringing forth another human to life. Let us inform women that there is NOTHING wrong with CS. Only thing is to ensure one goes to a hospital with qualified surgeons (which is why General hospital is usually suggested) because quacks or inexperienced doctors/midwives mismanage even natural births. The prayer is that God be with them and that they make no mistake. I remember a long time story of a woman who had surgical equipment left inside her after a CS which later caused her death. In all, a CS child is no different from the child from natural birth. The place of faith is not that one doesn’t trust God but trust God that whatever method of delivery, mother and child should be alive and well.

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