A pregnant woman smiling and talking to a doctor.

What is a cesarean delivery?

A cesarean delivery is a surgical procedure in which a fetus is delivered through an incision in the mother’s abdomen and uterus.1

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in 2014, 32.2% of U.S. births were by cesarean delivery.2 The CDC also found that the number of cesarean deliveries between 1996 and 2009 increased by 60%, peaking at 32.9%, but the number has stayed about the same since then.2 Read more about the reasons for and risks of a cesarean delivery.


  1. American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. (2015). Cesarean birth (C-section). FAQ006. Retrieved June 1, 2016, from http://www.acog.org/~/media/For%20Patients/faq006.pdf?dmc=1&ts=20120731T1617495597 External Web Site Policy (PDF - 211 KB)
  2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2015). Births: Final data for 2014. National Vital Statistics Reports, 64(12). Retrieved June 1, 2016, from http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nvsr/nvsr64/nvsr64_12.pdf (PDF - 2.95 MB)

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What is a high-risk pregnancy?

What infections can affect pregnancy?

What is labor?

What is a cesarean delivery?

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