Cesarean Section Day Date in the current year: January 14, 2024

Cesarean Section Day Cesarean Section Day, also known as C-Section Day, is observed annually on January 14. It was created to celebrate a surgical procedure that has saved the lives of millions of women and their babies and to commemorate the first successful cesarean section performed by an American physician.

Cesarean section, also spelled caesarian section and referred to as C-section for short, is the surgery in which an incision is made in the mother’s abdomen to deliver the baby or babies. It is performed in situations where vaginal delivery would put the mother, baby or both at risk. Reasons for a C-sections include problems with the placenta or umbilical cord, hypertension in the mother, pre-eclampsia or eclampsia, pregnancy with twins, obstructed labor, breech birth, and a number of pre-existing conditions and pregnancy complications.

Cesarean section is one of the oldest surgical operations known to humanity. However, C-sections were historically performed to save the baby when the mother was already dead or beyond help. C-section had an extremely high mortality rate (up to 85%) until the late 19th century. Medical advancements that made it relatively safe include the introduction of new surgical techniques, adherence to asepsis, anesthesia, antibiotics, and blood transfusion.

Although C-sections have a high success rate, a cesarean section is an invasive procedure that involves a number of risks. The World Health Organization recommends against performing cesarean section without a medical reason. Nevertheless, cesarean delivery on maternal request is a common practice in the United States. According to statistics, one of three women that give birth in the United States deliver by C-section.

Despite cesarean section being a common surgery, there are people who look down upon women who have delivered by C-section, claiming that they have “cheated the nature”. Giving birth to a baby is hard regardless of whether a woman delivers by “natural”, i.e. vaginal birth or by a C-section, and every mother deserves our admiration and respect. Cesarean Section Day was created to remind people of that.

The origins of Cesarean Section Day are unclear, but the choice of the date makes total sense. On January 14, 1794, Dr. Jesse Bennett performed an emergency C-section on his own wife Elizabeth, saving both her life and the life of their daughter. He didn’t report the surgery during his life because he thought other doctors would never believe his account, so for a long time Dr. John Lambert was credited with being the first American doctor to perform a successful cesarean section in 1827. The story of Bennett’s surgery was first published in The Southern Historical Magazine in 1892.

Celebrate Cesarean Section Day by learning more about this life-saving surgery, sharing the things you’ve learned with others to combat the misconceptions, myths and stereotypes surrounding C-sections, raising a toast to all the C-section babies and their mothers, and spreading the word on social media with the hashtags #CesareanSectionDay and #CSectionDay.

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Cesarean Section Day, C-Section Day, observances in the United States, Dr. Jesse Bennett, cesarean section, C-section