I think it's important to have

I think it's important to have
the discussion with the right people

to make those choices
so that those choices are informed.

A Caesarean section
involves an incision,

it's a major operation and
therefore shouldn't be taken lightly.

The period of recovery
following a Caesarean

is much longer
than following a normal birth.

We went and had a look at the
birthing centre and the birthing pool

and it just seemed
like the best thing to do,

so that was the plan.

I read all the books
and was just waiting for it to happen

but then, of course,
I think it was the last week,

we found out that he was breech.

So, having been to Stepping Hill, we had
a scan there and they confirmed that,

but it was quite a hard breech
to detect, actually,

because the consultants weren't so sure,

but then he was
and so we booked in for a C-section.

There are two types of Caesarean,

there's an elective, which is
a planned Caesarean section,

which is a discussion between
the obstetrician and the patient

and the obstetrician may well recommend
a planned Caesarean,

or there's the emergency Caesarean,

which is when a situation
crops up during labour

or at an unplanned time.

These are decisions made between
the obstetricians and the patients.

I didn't quite know what to expect,
how bad it would be,

and I must have gone to the toilet
about six times,

every toilet there was on the way
down to the theatre, I stopped in it,

and my husband was sweating.

So we were, there's no question,
we were really nervous just going down.

But then once we got there,

the anaesthetist had met us
prior to going down,

he'd met us that morning
and talked us through everything

and he was brilliant,
I found him really trustworthy

and there were going to be
no hidden surprises.

We have a theatre on delivery suite

and there's a resident anaesthetist
24 hours a day,

so any decision
of a Caesarean section being needed

means that we can be
there in the room straightaway.

We get the lady into theatre
as soon as possible

and anaesthetised promptly
to enable a quick delivery.

And so when I went down I met him,
and just really reassuring.

And he did the local anaesthetic

and there was another sidekick to him
who was really helpful as well.

They were two good fun guys
and they took my mind off it.

We were having a bit of a laugh
as they were injecting me.

And then it was all OK.

Obviously if a patient needs
a Caesarean section

then we've got to give them
some kind of anaesthetic,

and generally speaking
the choice is between

staying awake
with a spinal anaesthetic or an epidural

or going to sleep
under a general anaesthetic.

90 per cent of women
stay awake these days

under a spinal
or an epidural anaesthetic,

which is what we recommend
as the safer of the two techniques.

It also means that the mother is awake
and conscious when the baby's born,

rather than unconscious, and somebody
else can be in theatre with her

to take part in that moment.

(Zoe) It's fine,
it's totally manageable.

William was there by my side
and the room was quite busy.

They were playing Travis
in the background.

I think I got a choice of CDs,
which was lovely.

And then they started pulling the table,

but they were pulling him out because he
was stuck in a really strange position,

he was coming out bottom first.

Apparently he was quite high up.

They were tugging away
and finally got him out

and so he had a bit of a cry

and then they took him away,
cleaned him up, just double-checked him

and within 30 seconds he was back over
with his dad, who was right beside me,

and then they passed him to me.

Yes, it was lovely.

It was everything I hoped
that it would be when he arrived.

For women who are delivered
by Caesarean section,

we're very keen to make sure that
they have a positive birth experience

and try and normalise that
as much as possible,

therefore their partner is allowed
to go into the theatre with them.

And also to have some special time
with their baby

and have skin-to-skin after birth
is really important

and a benefit that allows that couple

to experience uninterrupted time
with their baby,

so as far as is possible
we try to normalise that experience

so that they have all of the benefits

that they would have had
from a normal birth.