Overweight and c/s (m - TMI)

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Overweight and c/s (m - TMI)
Tue, 05-13-2003 - 12:15am
Hi, ladies. I am lurking from the TTC board. Because of a medical condition, I will be having c/s when we get pregnant. I am overweight (about 100 lbs.) and am changing my eating, etc. while TTC.

A friend has really freaked me out - she said that with her c/s, she had leaking of blood and fluid at the incision and this went on for a few weeks. She also said to use stool softeners b/c poohing can reopen the incision. She is also very overweight and was when she gave birth.

Is this common with overweight women (leaking, etc.) or did she just have bad care??

Thanks, Jenn

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-03-2003
Tue, 05-13-2003 - 2:03am
Hi Jenn

I am also overweight. I had a c/s with my son in 97 and will have a repeat this time. I didn't have any trouble. I had my son at 11:47pm and by 8:00 the next morning, I had already had a shower and washed my hair. I was very pleased with the recovery. I didn't have to take any pain meds. while at the hospital or when I went home. I had him on a Tues. night and I got to go home that Thurs. I really think it all depends on the person. I wish you the best of luck ttc. Take care.


iVillage Member
Registered: 04-07-2003
Wed, 05-14-2003 - 1:59pm
Howdy, I am scheduled to have my 3rd c-section this August... And I am, too, approx. 100lbs overweight (I weight right now 270 lbs at week 26 of pregnancy).

Don't let people scare you. Just because your overweight - doesn't mean having a c-section. My situation was because of failure for labor to progress (and my baby was 10.2 lbs --- too big to deliver at only 9 1/2 cm. I wouldn't dialate to a full 10). My first section was emergency - and the recovery was tough. But no complications whatsoever. My second c-section was only 11 months ago - and the recovery was much much easier because it was planned. I was in and out quick w/out having to go through hours of labor pain (and let me tell you labor pain is the most painful pain I have ever felt). My incision did open up the second section - and it was only because they used disolvable stiches instead of staples (and the stiches weren't fastened well enough).

Talk to your dr. about your concerns and when do a search on a good one.

Best of luck to you.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Wed, 05-14-2003 - 5:37pm
Jenn --

Good luck conceiving.

I am obese and had a unplanned c-section with my first child, now for #2 we are planning on having a c-section. When I had Courtney (first child) I had absolutely no healing problems. Maek sure you take your hairdryer to the hospital so that you can lift up your belly and keep the incision dry, blowdry it after every shower. Also get up and walk around as soon as possible. It hurts the worst the first time. I wouldn't say your friend had bad care -- I would have to know exactly what transpired -- but I would say that if she was in excess of 300 pounds when she delivered she probably should have had a drain put in at the time of surgery. You being only 100 pounds overweight (and that is about what I am -- I would say I am more like 120 over -- but then again I am 23 weeks pregnant) you most likely will not require a drain. I did not require one. One of the biggest causes of postop infection with c-section is not keeping the incision dry. Leaking from the incision is not common at all, and like I said above -- she may very well have needed a drain inserted. They could theoretically have even gone back in postop and done this for her. Once you are pregnant you can discuss with your OB whether or not a drain is appropriate for you.

Again good luck!

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Avatar for cl_kellybethinca
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-19-2003
Thu, 05-15-2003 - 5:07pm
Yes, please don't let people scare you. What happens to one person will not necessarily happen to you!

Personally, I don't know if the weight has anything to do with an incision opening. Usually if you over do it with too much walking or heavylifting, you can risk opening your incision. I seriously doubt it was from having a bowel movement, but I do recommend the stool softner because it helps with the gas, and gas pains can be uncomfortable.

Hugs and hang in there. I have had many overweight friends have c/s with absolutely no problems. Good luck on your TTC!


Avatar for reestar
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Tue, 05-20-2003 - 5:02pm

First of all, GOOD LUCK TTC! I am 100 pounds (maybe more) overweight as well, and I got pregnant the first time after 15 months of TTC, but beat the odds by 3 months because I was coming off of depo provera and that usually takes 18 months. The second time, I had a lot of problems with my period after my son was born, and ended up on Clomid for three months and am pregnant again (took 17 months total). So I just wanted to say it is completely possible to conceive even overweight. I have had two very normal pregnancies as well, no GD, no HBP, etc. so please don't let people scare you.

HOWEVER, as for the C-Section recovery, I will caution you. Not to scare you, but so you will be prepared and NOT have the experiences I did. I did get an awful post operative infection. I was in the hospital for 4 days after my c/s and not once did anyone ever check or clean my incision, nor change my bandages, nor did they tell me I should. Even after I started running a fever (classic sign of infection). I was afraid to touch it, since they weren't and didn't clean it myself. I was not allowed to take a shower until the third day, and even then I was afraid to put soap on it since no one had told me it was okay. Long story short, it got infected, burst open, drained for 6 weeks. BUT this does not have to happen to you! This time, I plan to take my own darn soap and wash cloths and neosporin and blow dryer with me and clean the darn thing several times daily. My OB has already said he will give me antibiotics at the hospital (which my last did not) to help prevent an infection. It's just that because us heavier women tend to have a fat roll that hangs over the incision, it stays wetter, traps moisture, and is a better breeding ground. Had I known this going in, I could have saved myself a miserable 8 weeks! So forewarned is forearmed. Good luck on your TTC journey and I hope to see you in here soon with good news!


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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-29-2003
Thu, 05-22-2003 - 10:27am
Well, first of all, good luck with your TTC! Second, every pregnancy and delivery is different. I'm overweight, and have had 2 healthy children by c-section. My first c/s was due to failure to progress, and was done after 3 days of labor. I was knocked out (they couldn't get a spinal in, but were a bit rushed to get things going), but don't think it was b/c of being overweight. Had no post-op problems at all. Second c/s was due to baby being breech, and this time, doc (different doc) put in a drain (which drained pretty much nothing) and again, no post-op problems at all. I actually had no need for any pain meds (except advil). Nurses were great, showed me how to care for the incision (including taking a big huge maxi pad and using it to cover the incision to keep it dry, in addition to using a hair dryer to dry it off after showering). We're currently preparing for our third child (c/s date is 7/31), and hopefully, everything will go smoothly this time too!

Just an FYI - my boss (who pre-pregnancy weighed about 100 lbs when soaking wet) had a c/s for her twins, and ended up having incision problems (infection, leaking, etc.), so it's definitely not just a "overweight mom's" problem - it can happen to anyone!

Good luck!

Becky, Julia (8/98), Katie (8/00) and #3 c/s date 7/31/03

Mom to Julia (8/98), Katie (8/00) and Joshua (7/31/03)
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-26-2003
Mon, 05-26-2003 - 11:03pm
Hey! I am also about 100 pounds overweight. My first c-section was five years ago and I will be having my second c-section sometime in mid June. I had leakage with my first c-section scar. It totally freaked me out because no one told me this could happen. I beleive it happens because as a "big girl" we have more fluff down there anyway and that just adds more pressure to a sensitive healing area. Don't worry if this happens, just check your scar daily for any signs of infection. What really helped me was to put a maxi pad sideways in my underwear covering the scar. That way any leakage is absorbed and I did not have a problem with it rubbing or irritating the scar. About a week later, my scar opened a litlle bit on the edge about an inch. I went to the Dr. and he put me on antibiotics and topical stuff, too. No biggie. Just keep an eye on the healing and try the pads. I ruined several pairs of underwear and PJ bottoms due to the leakage before I started using the pads. It will kinda bulky down there because you will have a regualr pad too because of post-partum bleeding, but it is bearable, trust me. GOOD LUCK!!!!!!!
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Wed, 05-28-2003 - 8:57am
I had two c/s births in 1999. My DS in January and my DD in December and am currently pg with a little boy coming by c/s as well in July :0)

I was well over 400lbs when I got pg with the first two and had scheduled c/s & had absolutely NO problems with recovery/healing!

Now I am nervous with #3 but feel I'll have the same experience!



Mama to: Justin (4), Saralyn (3) & Hunter William EDD 7/14