5 weeks post c/s - recovery questions — The Bump
C-sections

5 weeks post c/s - recovery questions

Had my first c/s 5 weeks ago - emergency due to me starting to have bleeding from placental abruption, fetal heart rate dropped, and not progressing down the birth canal (her head was coming out sideways instead of straight down).

I was doing so well in the hospital that I was discharged 48 hours after delivery.  I was up and about, but didn't over do it and have not done any heavy lifting (including DS who is 32 lbs).

However, my stomach still feels bruised from a few inches below my belly button all the way down past my incision.  I can't stand anything to touch it and I am still having to wear yoga and sweat pants.

I tried to wear some maternity jeans (they are a smaller demi panel waistband like this - http://www.gap.com/browse/product.do?cid=6017&vid=1&pid=761866) and after a few hours I am in pain.  It almost feels like I get swelling around my incision.  I am already 5 lbs below my pre-preg weight, so the pants fit fine, just not comfortable.  They are the same way with my regular jeans - I am in instant pain after I zip them up.

Additionally, I have a rather large "shelf" of skin above my incision that it somewhat hard.  I am a size 6, so I am not that big and otherwise have a mostly flat stomach.  It is this shelf that hurts (and is now making me look like I have a butt in the front as well).  The pain has actually gotten worse and I am now having trouble getting up from a seated position.  I only feel about 20% better than I did at my 2 week appointment.  I still am having spotting too.

What gives?  I have my 6 wk checkup on Wednesday and I will ask then as well.  I am in enough pain that I can't even fathom being intimate with DH.   

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Re: 5 weeks post c/s - recovery questions

  • I'm just about 6 weeks and I still have soreness. I still wear maternity clothes frankly because I don't fit in any of my pre-pregnancy clothes! I have that "flap" too so that could be another reason why things don't fit.

    As for pain, I don't really have any, just the soreness. It's good that you have your check up next week so they can make sure your healing is going well. Perhaps it's scar tissue? Not sure but I hope all goes well at your appt on Wednesday.

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  • I am pretty sure all of this is pretty normal.  That shelf will go away with time and exercise (start slowly).  I would definitely bring up your concerns at your appointment, but remember that you had major abdominal surgery. That isn't small potatoes and it will take time to heal and get back to normal. I would say I was back to 100% at about 8 months post. That includes the sex factor. Sex sucked for a long time. Be patient. It all gets better.

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  • I agree with pp; I didn't really feel well until about 8 weeks pp.  The shelf stays around awhile...I still have mine due to severe lack of exercise.  I still had random pain for about six months here and there, depending on how I moved.  I wore granny panties and maternity sweat pants for at least 6 weeks, and after that I wore my maternity jeans for a few more weeks.  My work slacks actually felt better than my jeans on the incision, probably because they are a softer fabric.  Just give your body time to heal - it takes a long while.

    Edit:  I couldn't wear the demi panel jeans after my csection either.  I had a pair of full panel jeans that I just rolled the panel down.  You can wear regular jeans with a belly band too.  Also, we did not have sex for 10 weeks...

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  • I've had two c-sections and will have another with this baby. Everything you are describing is normal. Don't push yourself too hard. The recovery time is eight weeks, and yes it sucks. Just remember you had major surgery and you will most likely stop spotting with in a week or so. I so feel you when you say "is now making me look like I have a butt in the front". Do yourself a favor and don't rush sex, trust me when I tell you it will hurt for a little while. Good luck!! Don't get down about the recovery time, you'll bounce back!!! 
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  • I do think your recovery might be a little longer than most because you were in labor first-- planned c-section recoveries seem to go a little quicker. Just the nature of what your body has been through, it needs to recover from both the natural side of laboring AND the c-section. 5 weeks is still really soon, cut yourself some slack. I know it's hard and it sucks, but it WILL get better. Make sure to voice all of these concerns to your OB.

    The flab just sucks. I love pp for saying it goes away with hard work, part of me thinks it will never go away! I got pregnant with #2 at 13 months PP, and I still had a bit of it (and it made me miserable). But granted, I didn't do any ab work and limited exercise to begin with. 

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  • I started to suffer a deep pain weeks after things had started to get better and my carer told me this is common on the side that the doctor stood as he/she does a lot of pulling and tugging etc.

     After 5 weeks I don't think it should be sore to touch and doesn't sound super common to me. I was in labor for 36 hours before mine and while recovery was a lot more painful than people admit, after 5 weeks there was no pain like you are suffering.

     We are all different and all heal differently but I think you need to get anything that concerns you checked out.

     Good luck!

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