A hospital in Michigan is giving birth parents a new way to stay connected during a caesarean section.
Spectrum Health Butterworth, a hospital in Grand Rapids, Michigan, allows parents to watch the birth on a screen next to the operating table.
That’s how Amanda Koop got her first glimpse of her son, Charlie, when she gave birth to him at Spectrum Health Butterworth on November 24, 2021.
“They turned the camera on me just as they were about to pull him out,” Koop told “Good Morning America.” So, like a vaginal birth, I saw him come up and out, which was amazing. “
Koop, 36, had an unplanned caesarean section with Charlie, her first child.
She said that when it was decided that she should undergo a caesarean section, a nurse asked her if she would have the opportunity to see the birth, which she would not otherwise have witnessed. As is typical with a cesarean section, Spectrum Health Butterworth uses a drapery to separate the expectant parents from the surgical procedure.
“I wanted to use the camera because it could be a unique opportunity, and I did not want to miss those moments, his first breath, which can be something that could sometimes be missed in a C-section,” Koop said. who added that the camera also made the caesarean section “less anxious.”
“For me to be able to see him in those moments, okay, he’s out and he looks good, it was extremely soothing and calming,” she said. “A lot is happening in them [operating rooms]. They’re loud and they’re bright, and I could kind of focus right on him, which was really nice. “
The camera and monitor system are the same ones that doctors themselves use in other surgical procedures, such as laparoscopic surgeries, according to Dr. Cheryl Wolfe, a practicing, board-certified OBGYN and Vice President and Head of Women’s Health at Spectrum Health, a Michigan-based health care system.
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Wolfe said Spectrum Health Butterworth, which gives birth to about 7,500 babies a year, is the only hospital she knows of in the country that has used surgical camera technology for cesarean sections.
“We use this technology that has existed but uses it in a different way and that is not the norm across the country,” she said. “I hope there will be more hospitals and work and maternity wards that choose to put this in place. I think their patients will ask for it.”
Nearly 32% of all births in the United States occur by caesarean section, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Since the majority of cesarean sections are not expected, it can often feel sensational for expectant parents to go from the comfort of the delivery and delivery room to the sterility of the operating room, according to Wolfe.
She said the goal of giving parents the opportunity to see the delivery is to “turn the script around” and make it a more personal experience.
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“Every time you have something unplanned, especially around something as significant as having your baby, you get to be scared, ‘Oh, now I have to have a caesarean section. Now I have to have surgery. What does that mean?’ said Wolfe. “Now you get an opportunity where you can actually … see the process, something you were previously unable to do because the technology was not in place.”
The medical team is able to move the monitor so parents can see what they want from the birth, as was the case during Koop’s caesarean section.
“I did not want to see the first cut and get down to the baby, so I just saw the parts that I thought were important,” Koop said, adding that the monitor’s location and flexibility also gave her husband the chance to stay with her. side while choosing what he wanted to see.
“I think it can be a little scary for people what I should see, but the team does a great job of blocking things that you do not have to see and really focusing on the little baby,” she said. “I just thought it made such a difference in my delivery. I did not miss anything.”
The hospital uses camera to let parents see during cesarean section, which was originally shown on goodmorningamerica.com