Q&A: Is a C-section More Difficult if I'm Overweight?

Will a c-section be more difficult if I'm overweight?
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ByColleen Canney
Updated
Sep 2020
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Not necessarily. According to the stats, overweight women are more likely to need c-sections than those within a normal weight range — especially if they’re 20 percent or more over the recommended BMI. This happens for a few reasons, one of which is the fact that babies born to overweight moms tend to be larger-than-average in size, which means your doc may determine a vaginal birth is a little too risky.

If you do wind up needing a c-section, it’s true that the procedure may be a bit trickier, since your doc will have more layers to cut through, which may complicate the surgery as well as your recovery. But if you’re worried your weight might complicate your pregnancy, your best bet is to try to slim down before you conceive as much as possible. If you become pregnant before shedding the extra pounds, ask your doctor to help create a meal and exercise plan so you’ll gain less than the average 25 to 35 pounds packed on during pregnancy and have the most painless delivery possible.

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