Cesarean Section Day is on January 14. Do you know that it has been more than 200 years since the first successful cesarean section was performed? C-section, or cesarean section, is a procedure in which the baby is operated out of the mother’s womb by making an incision in the abdomen, instead of normal delivery, which is through the vaginal canal. Cesarean Section Day was created to credit the first successful cesarean section delivery performed by Dr. Jesse Bennett in 1794. This day is dedicated to the people born through C-section and also to the medical marvel that helped many mothers give birth without any complications.
History of Cesarean Section Day
The story behind the first C-section performed is an interesting one. The year was 1794. Elizabeth, the wife of American physician Dr. Jesse Bennett, was in labor, and Dr. Humphrey and Dr. Jesse himself were the only two doctors to attend to her. Elizabeth had been in labor for several hours, and the delivery became riskier as time went on. The doctors realized that C-section was the only option they had. This was a time when the C-section had never been performed and Dr. Humphrey was skeptical about this. He believed that carrying a C-section delivery meant certain death of the mother and the child. An argument followed between the two and Dr. Humphrey left Dr. Jesse Bennett’s house.
Dr. Jesse, Elizabeth, and a few maids and domestic help were the only few people left in the house with a daunting challenge staring at them. Dr. Jesse mustered the courage and decided to perform the C-section himself. He did not have proper medical apparatus and equipment at home to perform the delivery and had homemade instruments only. He quickly assembled planks supported by barrels, to make the operation table. A candle was lit to serve as the guiding light. Laudanum, which is a tincture of opium, was used as an anesthetic.
The operation began. Dr. Jesse confidently made a precise cut on his wife and cut open her abdomen. He then removed his daughter from her mother’s womb and cut off the umbilical cord. It is said that Dr. Jesse then proceeded to take out Elizabeth’s ovaries, justifying that he didn’t want to have such an experience again. Miraculously, both the mother and the child survived. The daughter was named Maria.
It is believed that Dr. Jesse never disclosed the details of the crude C-section performed in his barn. He felt that no one would believe him, or worse, they would call him a liar. It was much later, after Dr. Jesse’s death, that Dr. A.L. Night, who was a young boy when Dr. Jesse performed the C-section, assembled eye-witnesses of the C-section delivery and made a detailed report of the incident. And thus, the world came to know about the story of the bravery shown by both Elizabeth and her husband in times of crisis. Cesarean Section Day was created to honor this legendary couple and celebrate the advancement in medical history that helps save millions of mothers and infants every year.
Cesarean Section Day timeline
Bennett, an American physician, is born on July 10 in Philadelphia.
Bennett graduates as a Doctor of Medicine.
Dr. Jesse performs the first-ever C-section delivery recorded in history on his wife, Elizabeth.
Cesarean Section Day is created to mark the day of the historic operation performed by Dr. Jesse.
Cesarean Section Day FAQs
Is the Cesarean section painful?
No. A Cesarean section delivery is not painful. It is a misconception that the C-section is painful because general anesthesia is not administered and the woman is awake from the waist up.
What are the types of Cesarean sections?
Depending on the type of incision made, the Cesarean section is mainly of two types. One is the classical cut, which is a vertical cut across the abdomen, and the bikini cut, which is a horizontal cut.
Are babies born through C-section more intelligent?
There are shreds of evidence suggesting that babies born through C-section have higher I.Q. However, these claims are debatable and are not cut and dried as the I.Q. of a person may depend on the environment of upbringing and other factors also.
How to Observe Cesarean Section Day
Celebrate C-section babies
What better way to celebrate Cesarean Section Day than to raise a toast to the C-section babies. If you know someone who was born through C-section or is about to deliver their baby through C-section, then give a shout-out to them and wish them a happy Cesarean Section Day! If you are a C-section baby yourself, this day is for you!
Share it on social media
Let everyone know that you're celebrating this day. Write articles on C-section deliveries or interesting stories related to C-section deliveries and post them on your social media page.
Read more about Dr. Jesse Bennett
Use this day to improve your knowledge. Read more about the life and times of Dr. Bennet. Read further about the challenges of medical science in the 1700s and also about the personal life of Dr. Jesse and his wife Elizabeth. Utilize this day to improve your knowledge of historical incidents.
5 Facts About C-sections That Will Blow Your Mind
It is a four-inch cut
The incision made during a C-section is usually around four inches in length.
Regional anesthesia may be administered
General or complete anesthesia might not be given to the mother during a C-section delivery.
It has no relation to Julius Caesar
It is a myth that the term ‘Cesarean section’ became popular because Roman Emperor Julius Caesar was born that way.
A mother performed a C-section on herself
Inez Ramirez Perez performed a C-section on herself and delivered her son who was later named Orlando Ruiz.
There are many associated beliefs
In Judaism, an heir born through C-section might not be considered eligible for the Jewish ritual for the firstborn, Pidyon Haben.
Why Cesarean Section Day is Important
It allows us to appreciate Dr. Jesse and Elizabeth
Dr. Jesse performed a C-section on his wife while all the odds were against him. One can imagine the ordeal Dr. Jesse and his wife went through on that fateful day when almost everyone had given up hopes in them. Also, with limited surgical equipment, Dr. Jesse and his wife showed exemplary courage in times of crisis and overcame the situation. This is a day to appreciate courage and resilience.
We can appreciate medical advancements
This day makes us realize the advancements medical science has made, and the impact it has had on society. Many illnesses that were fatal in ancient times are now curable. It allows us to appreciate medical science and its progress.
We improve our knowledge
This is also a day of learning. This day gives us an opportunity to learn more about the lives of geniuses such as Dr. Jesse. It gives us a chance to know more about the life and times of these people and to draw inspiration from their lives.
Cesarean Section Day dates