For the kind of popularity the C-section delivery has been gaining, the knowledge about it is rather rare.
Here are some weird notions people seem to have about where this name came from, and how they are all wrong.
Myth#1: Named after Julius Caesar.
Allow me to burst your bubble, mother-to-be (or maybe you are just curious, not pregnant – but even that can lead to pregnancy so be careful). When women opt for the “easier” delivery method, it’s not the Roman general’s midwife they have to thank.
As the myth commonly goes, someone whipped up the rumour that Gaius Julius Caesar was first to be #BornThisWay, and then the world went Gaga over it. Especially pregnant women. But the truth is that Julius was called Caesar because of the way he was born.
However, Caesar is NOT the reason C-sections are called so. Yes, he WAS born a Caesarian, but that was only because he was about to kill his mother in childbirth and the Roman custom did not allow a foetus to remain inside a dying woman. So they had to “rip” him out. But in case you are wondering, his mother survived. But Caesar, it was kind of hypocritical of you; so much for “Et tu, Brute?!”
Myth#2: The incision is C-Shaped
Umm… no. Wrong again. The surgery isn’t done using an alphabet stencil with the letter C preferred by your OB-GYN. If that were the case, crazy mothers would get cuts in the shape of their baby’s initials (not to be giving anyone any ideas).
So yes, the cut made through the uterus and abdomen wall is curved, but if it’s a perfect C, it’s only a “C”oincidence.
The reason will be revealed soon. Stay tuned for some more freaky myths…
Myth#3: They cut the cervix, so…
HELL NO! (I got this answer from one of the lesser knowledgeable girls when I was asking around) I would like to believe this supposition is rare, because if this is what you think a C-section means, you need to go back to school.
First of all, they do NOT cut up the cervix. For two reasons: the cervix is way inside your body and cutting it up does no good, if at all you can reach it without destroying the vagina. Second: the incision is made at the bottom of the bulge, just where the pubic hairline (usually) begins.
Finally, the trending reason women go for a C-section, despite its complications is due to the fact that they don’t want to deal with the pain, and “cutting up the cervix” is not painless -_-
In Latin, “caedere” means ‘to cut’. The children being born were names ‘caesones’. This is perhaps where the name originated.
Another theory is that the name was popularized (if not derived) from the Roman rule called ‘Lex Caesarea’ (which literally translates to Caesarea=Imperial, Lex=Law) – by this law, if a mother dies during or before the child is born, she shall be cut up and the child removed. This was the last resort in complicated childbirths and reserved only if the mother or both (mother and child) were to die. The two bodies would be buried separately.
The myth of Caesar is most popular because an ancient writer Pliny The Elder wrote a scripture relating the two, so it’s safe to say that the name was made popular by the Roman general, but not inspired from his name.
In fact, there are many modern day languages in which the translated version of the term ‘Caesarean delivery’ translates to ‘Emperor cut’ or something along those lines…
and a few others
So that’s how the surgical delivery got its name. Here are some fun facts about C-Section.
The Indian God Hanuman was born a Caesarean
Around 25% of American women opt for C-sections instead of vaginal births
Vaginal births are difficult after a C-section for half the women because the incision leaves a thinner uterus lining at the incision region. It is a complicated and unnecessary surgery, so doctors and WHO try to avoid it, but there are no real dangers or harmful effects of it. And if you are optimistic, the glass is still half full: half the women don’t have problems with vaginal birth even after a surgical delivery!
Views presented in the article are those of the author and not of ED.