A recent survey by BellyBelly, an Australia's largest online parenting network, returned results not recognised in the frequent debate on increases in caesarean sections. Significantly, BellyBelly also attracted much higher results of reported infection than shown by individual hospitals.
The survey found 35% of respondents experienced some form of infection after a caesarean which required at least one course of antibiotics. 12% of respondents had a more serious infection requiring at least 2 courses of antibiotics or other medical assistance, including further operations.
Founder and owner of BellyBelly, Kelly Zantey, says, 'There is much information on the increase of caesarean birth in Australia, but not much attention is given to what can happen after the procedure. While most BellyBelly members gave good feedback on their recovery, many of the stories we attracted were 'gruesome' and recovery meant sacrificing the ability to breastfeed.
Women participating in the BellyBelly survey this month highlighted issues such as external wound problems to major internal infection, which not only affected their breastfeeding and ability to care for their new baby, but also their future fertility.
General statistics on infections experienced by women post-caesarean are not readily available; however hospitals do occasionally release their own information. Kelly Zantey says, 'Clearly the BellyBelly survey contradicts results released from hospitals. BellyBelly members showed a 35% infection rate, while the hospitals statistics appear to be much lower, even less than 10% .'
President of the non-profit Caesarean Awareness Network of Australia Cass McCullogh welcomed this information adding, "I'm not surprised that women are experiencing high rates of infection from caesarean surgery. If advised to have a caesarean, women should weigh up risks based on accurate information so they can make an informed decision about whether or not to have surgery. If a caesarean is avoidable, then it is worth considering what can be done to optimise the chances of a normal complication free birth."
Any patient undergoing a surgical operation is at risk of acquiring a wound infection, healthy mothers having elective or emergency caesarean sections included. Kelly Zantey says 'It's hard enough with a new baby let alone also coping with serious issues arising post caesarean. Women need to be fully informed of post-operative risks which go beyond the normal 'don't pick up heavy objects' and 'you can't drive for a while.' About BellyBelly
One of Australia's largest independently owned and operated online social networking sites for mothers and mothers to be. BellyBelly hosts an active virtual support network through moderated forums where members are increasingly turning their online relationships into real life face to face meetings. BellyBelly also provides its growing audience with pregnancy and parenting information, newsletters, online shopping and will open its first 'pregnancy centre' in Melbourne in 2008. www.bellybelly.com.auAbout Caesarean Awareness Network of Australia
The Caesarean Awareness Network Australia (CANA) is the vision of three Australian mothers who saw a need to provide a public voice on behalf of women who have had caesareans, women who are considering having a baby by caesarean and women planning to have a vaginal birth after caesarean (VBAC).