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Readers Respond: What did you feel during your c-section?

Responses: 18


Updated April 27, 2010

When we talk about a c-section we talk about how you won't feel any pain because of the anesthesia, spinal or epidural. You should only feel tugging and pulling for the most part - no pain. This isn't what always happens. Some women feel nothing. Other women have brief moments of pain. What was your c-section like?

My c-Section

Reading all the above posts is teriffying, I had an cesarean section 6 weeks ago after 30 hours of non progressive labour, making it to only 3-4 centimeters, I felt the incision and had to be put under, I still hate the fact that I didnt get that lovely euphoric experience meeting my son for the first time, and it sucks that this will probably be the case for future births, is there any good news out there, everyone seems to have a bad story to tell, even though I had a tough labour and after my section had many complications and stayed in hospital for over a week, I thought the midwives and doctors were all amazing and the care was second to none, I will not leave the experience dampen my spirits, my little fella was worth it all and I would do it again tomorrow, keep the chins up girls xx
—Guest Karlam01

Couldn't breath/ Sick

I had a planned c-section. My epidural went good. They asked me if I could feel them touching me I said yes, they gave me more meds and touched my chest again to see if I could feel anything. At that point NO. Well They get everything started. My Husband was in with me and I could hear them "cutting" something. It sounded like one of those large paper cutters cutting a stack of papers. IDK what it was. I still couldn't feel anything. I felt tugging and pulling and all of a sudden I started to feel sick. I told my Husband and he told the anesthesiologist. Who then gave me meds. Well as soon as they pulled her out I could swear I wasn't breathing! I started throwing my arms around trying to "get up" Which by the way It wasn't helping me move. The anesthesiologist and my Husband were telling me I was breathing so The Anesth. Put a mask on and told me to take deep breaths. It burned to breath! For weeks after that I was still having breathing problems. But with time it went away.
—Guest Sheri

First two went fine, third one bad.

I had my first son by emergency c-section in 1998. I was put under for it. They told me to count backwards from 10 and the last number I got to was 7 before I was out of it. I was very groggy for the next 24 hours afterwards and had a lot of chest congestion because of it. My second son was born by scheduled c-section in 2000 and it went great. Getting the spinal done wasn't pleasant as I had a student 'practicing' on me, that was painful and time consuming, but eventually the real doctor came and did it properly. I felt no pain, but the occasional pulling and pressure. I was fine and walking the next day. BUT with my third c-section in 2008, I felt everything. Well, that's not completely true. There was some 'numbing' but it was more comparable to when your arm falls asleep... you can still feel everything, but it's not as sensitive and a bit tingly. I screamed and screamed and finally they gave me a huge shot of morphine which knocked me out temporarily. I still feel upset about it.
—Guest Lily

During my Cesarean

I was feeling tugging to an extent that the Dr. Went praying for me . And after a while I started moving my hands for it was not easy wIth me since this is my first child.
—Guest rosemary asase

freezing cold...then pain..lots of pain

After they did the epidural I was shivering like crazy, when they tested to see if I was numb I kind of felt the poke and told them so. So they gave me more meds and tried again. This time I didn’t feel it...so they cut me open (that didn't hurt too bad) but when they started to pull the little one out I had severe pain starting in my right hip and radiating everywhere. So much so that I felt like was going to throw up...I asked them to make it stop and was crying and shivering and they gave me something that didn’t take away the pain but just made me dizzy on top of shivering and hurting...I couldn’t stop crying and they just kept telling me I was fine...I am now curious if I can sue them or if its just one of those things that "happens."
—Guest alexis walker


My first was an emergency c section but my epideral wasn't placed properly and when asked could i feel them pinching me before the surgery i very much could and said yes. next thing i know they are gassing me and i was going under. i remember waking up panicked because i couldnt move or open my eyes and i felt like i was suffocating perhaps because there was a breathing tube still stuck down my throat? not sure i couldnt open my eyes.... soon someone must have noticed and i was able to open my eyes and i could breathe. this time i have a scheduled c section and i'm so NERVOUS because they plan on me being awake for this one and I REALLY do not want to feel what i have read in some of the above posts while being awake during such a surgery. i'm wondering should i just ask to be put under again because i am so scared to start feeling what they are doing. then again not being among the first to greet your own baby YOU carried for nine months into the world is very depressing.
—Guest alie

Pulling and Digging

My spinal took nicely and I was completely numb to pain or sensation, but not specifically to pressure. I could feel it when they started wiggling the baby free and when they pulled him out, but not in a painful way. It was fairly forceful pulling and tugging, though, enough that my shoulders even moved somewhat, but really, no pain. Though I was not pleased to end up with a C-section and will certainly be planning for a VBAC for any future children, the surgery itself was not nearly as unpleasant as one might imagine. I'm thankful for a good anesthesiologist and a skilled (though fully lacking in bedside manner) obstetrician.

Almost Died

After being in labor for two days at 36 weeks, they gave me an cesarean. I couldn't feel anything. Thank God my husband was there because he had to tell the nurse that I started vomiting. Some of the vomit went into my lungs because I was tilted head down,feet up on the operating bed. The next two weeks i was in the ICU for walking pneumonia. The fluids from my lungs spilled over to my heart causing a cardiac erosion and I was giving two bags of blood during a transfusion because one wasn't enough. I was happy when I got home to see my son. Seven weeks later I conceived again (my husband's fault). I'm scheduling a c-section this time and I'm kind of worried because my husband won't be there with me, due to him being in the military.
—Guest Sandra B.

Too good and Too excruciating

With my son I had an emergency cesarean so they used my epidural for the surgery and all I felt was pressure with my daughter I had a spinal block that didn't work and excruciating pain to where I had to be put under my third daughter the spinal block worked even less and I was put under before they even let my husband in the OR. My last daughter they tried 5 times to place the spinal block before it worked but I was able to stay awake to hear her cry and see her before being put under for pain.
—Guest Akmomma4


I was scheduled to be induced one night before my due date due to high blood pressure. After thirty hours of contractions and only dilated to 5 they decided to perform a c-section. I had already gotten an epidural and tons of other pain mess but when I got to the surgery room they pinched me stomach and asked if I could feel that I said yes that it stung. Well they took that as start cutting and started making the incision. I was yelling in pain, begging them to stop they continued to cut farther across me. The whole time I was yelling at them to quit after they had made the incision they finally said they would put me under completely. I was so mad at the doctors for doing what they had done. This was my first child and I definitely doubt I'll ever want another due to this experience. Has anyone else ever had anything like this happen?
—Guest K

epidural and spinal still had pain

I had a c-section and my epidural only worked on one side. So they did a spinal. I didn't feel them cut me, but could feel my baby come out. The pain came after the baby was out. Extreme burning and a sensation that my uterus was very swollen. It was horrible.
—Guest krystal

Almost Everything

I went in for a planned c-section at 37 weeks, due to low birth weight. I had to have a spinal tap, since I am allergic to morphine.( They told me they use morphine to numb the spot for an epidural.) So the ans. gave me 3 shots and I started going numb. It started in my left leg and went up and down my right leg. I didn't even feel them put the catheter in. They started cutting and I didn't really feel anything until they started pulling. It was excruciating. They finally told me they couldn't give me anymore Demerol because it would effect the baby. So I felt them pull him out. As soon as he was out they gave me more Demerol. But I could still feel them scrubbing and stitching up my insides. So much so, that they poured local anesthetic in me. They were almost done sewing up when the ans. decided to knock me out since my blood pressure was dropping. I woke up in the recovery room, so gone that I couldn't hold my baby. The pain was horrible. But worth having my lil man.
—Guest AzPain


I didn't know that epidurals don't always work. So, they tried morphine, then a spinal block... the doctor started puting stuff on belly getting ready to cut -I said "Oh that feels cold." my doc said "You can feel that??!!" I knew I was in trouble. They gave me nitrous Oxide, but that was more for them. I felt absolutely everything!! And let me tell you I was screaming!!! I was super scared (being my first child/birth experience), and I was screaming! Because they don't like giving general anesthesia they tried everything else. But, because I had all these meds in my system, they couldn't give me gen.anes. because of the harm it could cause the baby. Because of the meds my baby's first apgar score was a 2, then five mins later it was a 9 so it really does show you the affects of meds on soon-to-be born baby.
—Guest NB

Elephant on me...

For my c, I was taken to a room with just the anesthesiologist and myself, which was the only time I felt lonely, I wished they had let my husband in with me, but it went by fairly quickly and before I knew it I was on the table and they were beginning. I cant really say I felt too much initially, but when it came time to pull the baby out, I felt pressure and weight on my stomach, like an elephant was on me. I had difficulty breathing, and couldn't see much, luckily my husband was keeping me informed and told me when the held the baby up to be seen, once he was handed off to the nurse, she brought him right over to me so I could see him and kiss him. It was unreal to finally after so long see the tiny baby we had waited for so long.
—Guest Arlene

Not much

I had a c-section with epidural for my oldest and didn't feel much at all. I even had to ask my husband if they had started yet and the anesthesiologist said they were almost done. I was very sad to not get the skin to skin time with her until after they were done stitching me up (about 30 minutes or so). It also took almost that long for me to see her for the first time which will stick with me forever. Recovery wasn't horrible which I attribute to a diligent nursing staff that had me up and about within about 4 hours and encourage me to walk the corridors every few hours.
—Guest Heather S.

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