Scientific letter

Early discharge from hospital after caesarean section at Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital

Eckhart Johannes Buchmann, N Pillay


Objective: To determine the outcome of discharging mothers at low risk of postoperative complications, two days after caesarean section, without home visits.

Design: Prospective descriptive study.

Setting: Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital postnatal ward.

Participants: 98 women, at low risk for postoperative complications and are discharged two days after caesarean section.

Methods: Women were approached two days after caesarean section. Their antenatal information, caesarean section details and contact numbers were documented. Fourteen days after discharge the women were contacted telephonically and asked a series of questions.

Main outcomes: Rates of choosing early discharge again, maternal and infant re-admission, and wound complications.

Results: There were three maternal readmissions, for endometritis, eclampsia and a sprained ankle. There was no infant readmission. Eighty eight women (89.8%) would again choose to have early discharge should they require another caesarean section in a future pregnancy. Nine (9.2%) experienced minor wound dehiscence and eight wounds (8.2%) were described as infected. Four of the wounds (4.1%) bled excessively. Thirteen women (13.2%) experienced some degree of wound pain.

Conclusions: In this environment it appears safe to discharge low risk postoperative mothers two days after caesarean section without midwife visits or home follow-up.

Authors' affiliations

Eckhart Johannes Buchmann, University of the Witwatersrand

N Pillay, University of the Witwatersrand

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Caesarean section; postpartum complications

Cite this article

South African Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology 2011;17(1):17.

Article History

Date submitted: 2010-08-30
Date published: 2011-03-02

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