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Will I need a C-section if I have a prolapsed umbilical cord during labor?

Diana Meeks
Diana Meeks on behalf of Sigma Nursing
Family Practitioner

Yes. A prolapsed cord is considered an obstetrical emergency, and unless the prolapsed cord is found while crowning, you will need a C-section to ensure baby's health.

Prof. Kathy Snider
Neonatal Nursing Specialist
Although there are few real emergencies in the labor and delivery setting, a prolapsed cord is considered to be one. When the umbilical cord, which is the baby's "lifeline", comes out through the vaginal opening before the baby, it can pinch off the blood and oxygen supply to the baby. In the rare circumstance when this occurs, the care provider quickly recognizes that the prolapsed cord requires an emergent delivery, which is always a cesarean birth.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.