When Divya Singh went for an ultrasound in her 37th week, she was told that she should have an elective cesarean section because her baby had a double loop of cord around neck. She couldn’t help wondering ‘Is normal delivery possible with cord around the neck?’.
Divya had been preparing for a normal delivery since she discovered she was pregnant. She was exercising, eating healthy and attending antenatal classes.
Everything was going smoothly for her until now. Still keen to try for a normal delivery, Divya and her husband came to Sitaram Bhartia Hospital in Delhi for a second opinion. Anxious, she put forth all her questions to Dr Rinku Sengupta, Consultant Obstetrician-Gynecologist.
What happens if the cord is around the baby’s neck?
About1 in 3 babies are born with a cord around neck without any adverse outcome.
Still, many expectant parents imagine that the cord around the neck is like a rope that will strangulate their baby during labour. This is not true.
Divya was relieved to hear that her baby was not in danger. She asked about what may cause a single or double loop of cord around the neck and any risks to know.
What causes umbilical cord around the neck?
The umbilical cord sometimes gets wrapped around the baby’s neck as it moves in the womb. The cord itself is long, soft and filled with a jelly-like substance that cushions the blood vessels carrying oxygen and nutrients to the baby.
What are the risks of umbilical cord around neck?
In the unlikely event that these blood vessels get compressed and there is reduced oxygen flow to the baby, your gynecologist will pick it up as part of their routine monitoring during labour. They might advise changes in your position to help relieve the compression or an emergency cesarean section. But it’s important to keep in mind that a cesearean section is needed in very few cases.