General anesthesia safe?

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-30-2011
General anesthesia safe?
Fri, 07-08-2011 - 5:15pm

I was wondering in case I have to have a c-section if general anesthesia is safe/recommended.

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-06-2005
Fri, 07-08-2011 - 8:10pm

They usually only do general anesthesia in emergent situations, so from the time your under to the time the baby is out is minutes. They prefer spinals or epidurals bc the effects do get to the baby, but in an emergency there isnt time to do one.

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-17-2010
Fri, 07-08-2011 - 10:13pm

As the previous poster stated, general anesthesia would only be used in a true emergency - at which point expediency is everything. With my DS, they used general anesthesia. The cord was around his neck and his heartrate plummeted during the course of labor. I already had an epidural in place, but even strengthening that for a c-section would have taken too long. They delivered him in less than five minutes from the time they wheeled me out of my room. I remember signing the consent forms, with my left hand, while they rolled me down the hall and the nurse jogged along beside with them.

Lilypie Third Birthday tickers
iVillage Member
Registered: 06-16-2008
Sun, 07-10-2011 - 2:39pm

I agree with what the previous posters have said - general anesthesia will only be used by most hospitals in a true (life or death emergency). It's important to note that the term 'emergency C/S' usually just means one that wasn't scheduled in advance and has become necessary during the course of labor. Often this is because the baby is in the wrong position or not tolerating contractions very well or Mom is not dilating. In a true emergency, a crash C/S is performed under general anesthesia because there is immediate threat to life and no time to wait for an epidural kick in or be topped up.

Both epidurals and general anesthesia are medical practices and, as such, carry certain risks. Problems associated with epidurals are widely considered to be much lower, however, and coupled with the fact that Mom remains conscious throughout and can bond with baby much more quickly, are standard practice in most hospitals for non crash C/S.