Women's Health
Delivery

Episiotomy (Perineotomy)

What is meant by an Episiotomy?

  • The pelvic floor is a group of muscles that support and keep the pelvic organs in place. These organs include the (bladder, uterus, and rectum).
  • The contraction and relaxation of these muscles also helps in controlling urination and bowel movements.
  • The perineum is the  group of muscles between the anus and the vulva.

The pelvic floor and the perineum can be protected by:

  • Healthy nutrition
  • Drinking plenty of fluids
  • General fitness exercises
  • Pelvic floor exercises before, during and after the pregnancy.

 

What is an Episiotomy?

An episiotomy is a surgical incision of the birth canal performed during labor to enlarge the opening for the fetus's head to pass through.

The medical justification for the operation:

• Accelerating childbirth due to weakness in the fetal heart rate.

• The doctor needing to use the obstetrical forceps or a vacuum device for vacuum-assisted delivery.

 

What are the risks of an episiotomy?

  • Increased chances of postpartum hemorrhage.
  • The wound may get bacterial infections.
  • Chronic pain in the region.
  • Increased likelihood of the perineum incision tearing and reaching the anus and the rectum, which could lead to a new set of complications.
  • Increased  chances of tearing during second pregnancy.

There is no scientific proof that there is a need to cut the perineum for the female during her first childbirth. In fact, it may cause many problems, and females can give birth  without cutting the area.

 

During childbirth: 

Your healthcare provider will assist you during labor and will patiently provide the necessary support to protect the perineum area by:

  • Allowing you to take straight positions, and not to restrict you to the bed.
  • Placing warm compresses on the area during the second stage of childbirth.
  • Supporting the area after the fetus passes through to reduce the chances of tearing, and avoid cutting without medical justification.

For further information:

 

Last Update : 25 February 2020 12:09 PM
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