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chronic pain, pregnancy

Persistent pain after a c-section: when is it nerve pain and what can you do?

Surgical scar in patient with iliohypogastric neuropathy

Persistent pelvic and/or abdominal pain post c-section often poses a diagnostic and treatment dilemma, because most OB/GYNs know very little about pain and most pain doctors know very little about the pelvis.

But that’s where I come in, being both board certified in OB/GYN and Pain Medicine.

It is hard to know how many women have persistent pain post c-section, because it hasn’t really been studied. All I can tell you is that I see several women a month with this problem. We do know is that 1-3% of women will have persistent nerve pain post c-section (although this is only one cause of pelvic pain). Today’s post will focus on that one type of pain, which typically means pain from one or all of these three nerves in the belly wall: ilioinguinal nerve, iliohypogastric nerve, or genitofemoral nerve.

This kind of nerve pain does not imply that anything was done incorrectly at the time of surgery. Surgery is injury and unfortunately as surgeons cut tissues we also cut the small nerves in the skin (that is what produces the weird numbness or strange feelings that you have over a scar that came sometimes persist for years, because nerves don’t heal quite as well as other tissues). I had a nephrectomy when I was 11-years-old and my scar is still numb in places and gets odd sensations, especially itching, from time to time (that’s part of my massive scar in the picture, BTW).

With surgery we avoid the important nerves; however, the ilioinguinal, iliohypogastric, and genitofemoral nerves (which allow you to feel sensations on your abdomen) run quite close to the edge of a c-section incision and they can be bruised, crushed, or trapped by scar tissue. The nerve can also be cut, but this is less likely to cause pain and more likely to produce complete numbness. Sometimes when these nerves are cut both numbness and pain can result, a condition called anesthesia dolorosa, which can be very challenging to treat.

How do you know if the pain that is persisting after your c-section is this kind of nerve pain?

Pain from the ilioinguinal, iliohypogastric, and/or genitofemoral nerves is a superficial pain that is typically felt at the edges of the scar. It will almost always be described as a burning pain and sometimes there may be electric shock-like sensations. The area will hurt to light touch, meaning clothes, the waist band of pants/jeans, wearing a seat belt, or just touching the area lightly with your fingers will hurt. If you can push on the area and not reproduce the pain, the ilioinguinal/iliohypogastric/genitofemoral nerves are less likely to be the culprit.

The diagnosis is confirmed with a nerve block, basically injecting an anesthetic (numbing medication, typically lidocaine) around the nerve to cause temporary numbness. If there is both numbness and pain relief, the diagnosis of a peripheral nerve injury is confirmed. If there is numbness but no change in the pain the cause is probably something else. If there is no numbness then the nerve block was done incorrectly and should be repeated or you should see someone who can do it correctly. The doctor should keep you in the office after the nerve block and repeat their exam once the area is numb to A) confirm that they have done the nerve block correctly and B) to see if the nerve block worked.

Once neuropathic (nerve) pain from the ilioinguinal/iliohypogastric/genitofemoral nerves has been confirmed, initial treatment may include all or some of the following:

  • A Lidoderm® patch (topical numbing medication applied to the affected area).
  • A series of nerve blocks using steroid medication. At a cellular level, pain is related to inflammation and steroids are potent anti-inflammatories. Sometimes there is scaring around the nerve, and since steroids cause fatty tissue to shrink a little for some people this extra millimeter or two of space that is freed up after the injection takes the pressure off the nerve and reduces the pain. Most people feel improvement from steroids 5-7 days after the injection.
  • Adjunctive mediations, which work on how the pain is processed at a cellular level. The best and most studied option is a class of drugs called tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs, although they are no prescribed because your doctor thinks you are depressed, they are pretty poor antidepressants). Drugs traditionally used for epilepsy (like gabapentin or topiramate) can also be used. I favor nortriptyline because it has fewer side effects than some of the other TCAs and unlike the epilepsy drugs is only once a day. Nortriptyline is also generic and can be taken if you are breastfeeding. Often these types of medications are not needed long-term. The goal is to get the pain controlled for 4-6 months and then assess whether or not a trial of stopping the medication is indicated and desired.
  • Getting screened for depression. Depression makes pain worse. It’s not the cause of your pain, but it is like pouring fuel on a fire and you can’t put out a fire out with a steady infusion of gasoline.
  • Controlling the pain with ibuprofen or opioids, although in reality opioids are not that great for this kind of nerve pain. The BEST pain relief you can expect from opioids with any kind of chronic pain is about a 30-60% improvement, and in my experience it seems to be less than that for nerve injury related pain.
  • Weight loss if you are overweight. When you are overweight and your belly hangs down a little (I hate to use this term, but if I say muffin-top everyone knows what I mean) it puts traction on the ilioinguinal and iliohypogastric nerves. Some people can even develop nerve pain from the ilioinguinal and iliohypogastric nerves simply due to obesity without any prior surgery in the area.
  • Mind-body work. Stress and anxiety make pain worse. This doesn’t mean the pain is in your head, but rather the chemical changes of stress and anxiety will worsen your pain. Deep belly breathing (like Lamaze) or yoga are just a couple of ways to harness the mind-body connection to improve your pain.
If the nerve blocks work, but don’t give long-lasting relief advanced procedures on the nerves, such as pulsed radio frequency (sending an electrical impulse along the nerve) can sometimes be helpful. Other nerve blocks closer to the spine can also be considered. A peripheral nerve stimulator (an implant) to over ride the painful signals from the nerve may be an option for some people.

If all else fails (and in my experience this is rare) surgery on the nerve ending to clean up scar tissue or even removing the damaged end of the nerve can be an option. However, this should only be considered when A) the diagnosis is 100% certain (meaning confirmed by nerve blocks), B) the other treatments have been tried and failed and C) there has been an in-depth discussion about the bad things that can happen after this kind of surgery. 

There are certainly many other causes of persistent pain after a c-section and I will address those in another post in the next day or two. Remember, this blog does not represent individual medical advice. 

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Discussion

93 thoughts on “Persistent pain after a c-section: when is it nerve pain and what can you do?

  1. I have these unpleasant sensations (not exactly pain) in the centre section of my abdomen from the navel to the pubis following abdominoplasty in early 2007. Guess it’s never going away. Very interesting to know what possibilities are available if it ever bothers me too much to ignore any more. Thanks for a very interesting blog, which I’ve just discovered.

    Posted by Midwife in UK | September 17, 2011, 4:50 pm
    • Hello,
      I am an occupational therapist who has been completing scar release for about 4 years now, with truly miraculous outcomes- without medication, drugs, injections etc. My practice (and group of 30 other clinicians trained across Ontario that I oversee) revolves around treating numerous different types of scars (after mastectomy, burns, “failed surgeries” etc). The technique is essentially painless, non-invasive and inexpensive, involving applying direct current to the scar area to repolarize the underlying scar tissue, and breaking up adhesions in the fascia. You can find more information about it at http://www.etpseducation.com. I’m in Toronto, but Florida is the state with seemingly the most representation in clinicians using this treatment for chronic pain after surgery. I’d be happy to discuss further with you.

      Posted by Tamra Ellis | May 15, 2012, 11:54 am
  2. I had a left nephrectomy in 1992, but prior to that I had 3 c-sections, and since I have had a gall bladder removed, I am obese and had a gastric bypass, but after I loss 100 pounds, I never lost another pound, and am gaining back. I am in constand pain with my abdomen internally and also my left flank side is always hurting, I feel that as my bowels move, it is pushing against scar tissue, I may be wrong, but it seems the case, if I have a bout with loose bowels, I do not hurt as much in my back, but i cramp up in my stomach. Any suggestions?

    Posted by Sharon | September 28, 2011, 6:57 pm
    • Hi, I can truly relate. In 2004 I had my first csection and recent 2011 had my second c-section and have been in pain ever since. I also had the lapband and lost a hundred pounds before having the second baby. I had an iud removed because my gyne couldn’t figure why I was having abdominal cramping,pelivc and cesction pain radiating down my upper thigh making it almost impossible to walk or do my daily activities and it worsens during my cycle time. Prayerfully i’ll see if the pain imporves since I removed the iud a week ago and lose some of this baby weight around my abdomen will make it better.

      Take care

      Posted by Barbarett | May 25, 2012, 4:43 pm
  3. Thanks so much for this helpful information. I’m getting ready to start Nortriptyline for genitofemoral nerve pain following recent c-section. You mentioned favoring this med over others because of the fewer SE as well as being able to take while breastfeeding. My pharmacist was not able to provide me much information on the effect this drug has on infants. I’m currently breastfeeding and just wanted to know if you’re able to provide me any additional information, effects etc. Thanks a million!

    Posted by Opal | October 27, 2011, 12:17 am
  4. DR. JEN GUNTER
    I am lazar posting comments from South India,
    I wish to get some clarification regarding post c-section pain. My wife had c-section for the second child about 3and 1/2 years back. Still she feels lot of pain during the date period. Some time it is persistent for long i.e. for weeks after the period is over. Further during summer or winter months she gets lots of pain. She is telling that pain comes exactly at the end of the stitch, where some time we notice some swelling also. Please guide us what kind of treatment is necessary.

    Lazar. A
    Chennai

    Posted by Lazar | November 1, 2011, 8:37 am
  5. I had two emergency sections 24 and 14 years ago and still have chrinic pain from adhesions near the bowel. i also had ruptures between the lower bowel and vaginal wall requiring further surgery.
    I find regular swimming and trying to keep my weight on the lower side all seriously help the pain. I am also under a pain specialist and my regular tweaking of medications, usually a mix of slow release anti-inflammatories and anti-epileptic drugs used for neuropathic pain help. Keep a pain diary to help your doctors understand the extent and type of pain.
    Don’t give up and insist on seeing specialists: although I’m grateful for the essential surgery, the long-term effects have been gruesome. I would never recommend a section as a lifestyle choice. Mine were both essential and saved myself and my kids.
    Best wishes.

    Posted by Happyhen | December 26, 2011, 2:06 pm
  6. I had my 2nd C-section 2 yrs back and i still have persistent chronic pain around the cesarean wound area off and on. But recently the pain has gotten worse especially when my period is due. I had consulted many gynaes and they said its nerve pain and nothing can be done and prescribed some Gabapentin. I have not gotten any nerve block as the doctor felt it was not necessary. Please advise what can be done to alleviate this pain.

    Posted by crest | January 25, 2012, 7:50 pm
    • I have also had my 2nd c-section exactly 2 years ago and suffer from nerve damage on the left side of my incision. My first baby- no real issues (just early stages of toxemia during the last couple of weeks) and no issues at all with my second pregnancy (except for the pains of carrying another large baby). Since I’ve had my second child my incision opened and was infected at 3 weeks post delivery, have had 2 nerve blocks (that haven’t worked), a torn muscle and hernia repair (all at the exact same site as where the pain is located) along with scar tissue removal. I’ve been prescribed Gabapentin also but have not taken it because I fear of the side effects. My period has become irregular and incredibly painful and heavy when I do have it. The nerve pain flairs up so bad that a week before it is due I double over quite often. I have searched extensively on the internet for “chronic pain after pregnancy/childbirth” and this article by Dr. Gunter is the first one that I have found that relates to me. I’ve been searching on and off for a year and a half while I am having pain flare ups, crying while I sit at my computer. My life has become a downward spiral since I have had this pain along with a list of other chronic illnesses since having my baby (she was 10.8lbs). I’ve had numerous Upper Respiratory Infections (with bronchial coughs), ear infections, MRSA, flu’s, neck and back pain (I’ve been told the back pain is due to the nerve damage- I also get severe muscle spasms). My stomach has been severely stretched out from both of my pregnancies that I still look pregnant to strangers, losing weight there has been the most difficult for me with the constant fear that I am going to hurt myself doing a simple sit-up (my muscle tear was from setting down groceries and my hernia happened while lying in bed reading). Before pregnancy I only had a cough once a year- no other health issues and was an avid swimer and runner. I absolutely love and adore my children, everyday with my aches and pains is a reminder that “Hey! They were there!”. I’ve found that alternating hot and cold packs help (especially the hot), putting a pillow under my left knee , alternating Tylenol and Motrin (if you do not have an aspirin allergy), acupuncture, and a good healthy support system. My husband has been my savior, my insurance is through the roof, my Mother and sisters have been a good ear to chat with. I’m lucky I work for myself because with the days that I have had to call in sick I would of been fired long ago. The other day my husband expressed interest in another baby. I would love to have another but have fear of how my body would handle another pregnancy and recovery. Most say “mind over matter” but after having 2 large babies, 2 c-sections and chronic pain and illnesses it can be tough to put your mind to it when in constant physical pain. My biggest hope right now is that I can be the best mother to my children that I can be.

      Posted by Lola | June 22, 2012, 9:24 pm
    • OMG me too. I’m 6 years after C-section. Suddenly this pain pops out . I was exercising and suddenly felt like sth happened. A month after, thi weird pain started over my right hip, into the groin and leg. It moved to the belly button. I also have weird pain , like an ttack whhen my period is due. Even though I have normal periods with no special pain,. I’ve sen a doctor who mentioned the nerve thing. He said “laparscopy” but I guess I will give my body a chance. I will see other doctors. I can’t rush into surgeries ….

      Posted by nono | February 4, 2013, 8:45 am
  7. I had my 6th c-section annd a had my tubes tide cut n removed almost 9 months ago… I have had abdominal pain since! : (
    I also had an exploritory surgery 6 weeks later which they found that tissue that was growing where it shouldn’t have been! : (
    He thought the problem was fixed but yet here I am still having pain… Its like a sharp stabbing/ pulling where my scar is at! My dr says he nor any dr around the local areas will not perform another surgery cause it juz causes more scar tissue! I was taking hydrocodone but my dr switched me to tramidol
    Cause I have been on the pain pills for so long! It doesn’t take the pain away it juz makes it so its not so bad! Its really hard to function without having something to help with the pain…
    I am at wits ends cause my dr will not do anymore for this! At times I juz wish they would cut out my stomach…
    I don’t regret having my last baby… I juz regret what I have to put my husband thru! : (
    I juz want my life back… And want life to be like it was before my last c-section! Can you help me??

    Posted by barbara schreiner | March 20, 2012, 8:06 pm
  8. I have had 5 c-sections and have constant pain around the right end of my incinsion, into my hip and into my glutes and back. Does this sound like nerve pain or something else worth investigating? I can’t find a good pain doctor who understands pelvic issues.

    Posted by Julia Johnson | April 19, 2012, 5:55 am
  9. I had my c-section over 6 years ago. I have this pain mostly when I am laying down and go to roll over where my scar is I get this awful “shock” and I can’t move for a minute. Recently it has gotten worse and is now happening when I am up and moving around and also my hips are beginning to hurt when I lay down. Is this nerve pain like what you are describing?

    Posted by Becky | April 26, 2012, 6:25 am
  10. Hi, like many here I had 2 C Sections. The 1st was 5 years ago when I delivered my twins. Everything was fine until my 2nd C Section almost 3years ago, where I failed to delivery naturally again. This 2nd C Section took longer to heal and there is almost always a sharp pain during bowel / when there is gas in the tummy. This is especially true during the period week. Just early this week, I almost fainted in my bathroom while trying to clear my bowel during my period week. Have tired asking my gyn a year ago but she can’t seems to understand what I am saying. It felt like the pain is on the internal wound. My gyn even did a scan and she simply say the wound was healing fine. Now that I have read your article. Please advice if there is anything I can do to at least reduce the pain? Thank you.

    Posted by Joanne | May 15, 2012, 8:08 am
    • Hello, where do you live? I’ve made a career out of treating scars, especially c-sections that have had complicated recoveries, and can work with you remotely by teaching you how to use a device that you can rent for a month.

      Posted by Tamra Ellis | May 17, 2012, 4:58 am
    • Your pain sounds like mine. After 2 c sections, I found out I had endomeitrios. I have been in severe burnig stinging tearingpain for 4 years now. When you had your second surgery the dr most likely spread the tiny cells. I had them growing on my entire abdominal wll. The make a glue substance that makes your pelvic frozen, and very painful bowel movements as well…good luck

      Posted by Holly | May 20, 2013, 11:13 pm
  11. I had a c section on sunday 13th May, I have rEcovered nicely but have ths persistent pain just under the navel thrs some numbness on top . This pain makes it so hard fo me to pee or walk. When I touch this area it feels hard n sore. Plz assist

    Posted by sandisiwe | May 23, 2012, 3:50 pm
  12. My wife suffers from persistent pain around the c-section scare and our son is 8 months old. Where do we find a doctor that will fix this problem. The OB/GYN that delivered our son gave us the willies when he could not figure out the baby was breach. An urgent c-cection was needed when he found the hard lump on my wife’s side was the babies head. Then he continued cutting my wife open after she told him the spinal block failed to work. Now she is scared to see any doctor in our area. Can you give us a recommendation for a good doctor located in Western United States who will provide real treatment similar to the procedure you described in your article.

    Posted by David Bishop | June 22, 2012, 8:20 pm
  13. I have been having pain like many of the above women. I had a C-section almost 13 years ago. Within a year or two I began to have this intense right groin pain, mainly where top of thigh goes into pelvis, and the pain travels down my right thigh into my knee. I’ve found it manageable with exercise, i.e. yoga/hip opening exercises, as well as swimming or bike riding along with appropriate rest. But I have been getting flareups which are excruciating and almost incapacitating! When it’s bad I cannot raise my right leg and it’s difficult to climb stairs, and I pretty much have an awful limp. Then there are times when my right leg does not feel “tight” or particularly painful and almost as if nothing had been happening ! A lot of “clicking” at the top of my right leg too. I’ve been researching all sorts of things in order to find out what it is, and I think I might have stumbled on the right track here !

    Posted by Elly | June 28, 2012, 2:51 am
    • My story is similar to Ellys’. Approximately, a year after my second Cessarean I went to the doctor because the inside of my leg was numb. My strength was not impacted. The doctor checked me out and sent me home. Several months later, I had itching on the outside base of my quad. A few months later, i woke up with a sort of sciatica pain except it mostly affected the center and base of my quad and around my knee. I coud not lift my leg to do stairs for a week and could only lie down with a heating pad. A few months later, I was running and I had sudden intense sharp groin pain. At first it was intense and would come back when I twisted or spread my leg. It is much better now but my groin and base of my quad hurts all the time which increases when I stand or walk. I have been searching for a diagnosis for a year and a half. Last week, I came a website of a doctor who specializes in scar related nerve issues. He recommended massaging the scar along with other things. I went on you tube and found a video about massaging my Cessarean scar. I do it for 5 minutes a day and I already have improvement. I wish I had been informed about the importance of massaging my scar. Apparently, scar tissue can trap a nerve or nerves. I am so excited that I finally have an answer and now I can work to solve my issue.

      Posted by Amy leonard | September 10, 2012, 11:30 am
  14. I had hyster in 2001. In year 2010 I felt sharp pain all along incision line in the very lower abs. I went to Dr and received Dx of nerve pain. I asked her if it could be related to hysterectomy but she said no due to the 9 year time lag.

    Now pain has spread around to abs, upper left leg, and back. It hurts to wear pants, to sit down, and the car seat belt is the worst.

    I am under care of a pain PA and am on gabapentin and lidoderm patch.

    Anyone hear of such a thing so many years later after surgery? Perhaps, they are unrelated.

    Posted by Mary | July 4, 2012, 11:20 am
    • Dear Mary,
      Yes, I had the same thing happen to me. I lived in Japan when I had four major surgeries to remove my uterus, then three months later my left ovary which was attached to my lining of my abdomen. At that time I begged them to take out my right ovary too, because when I had my period my right side hurt even worse than the left. Two months later exactly on my 33birthday I started having the same symptoms as the left side only worse. I had to be rushed into the operating room with a chocolate cyst and ruptured appendix and peritonitis. They thought I was going to die so they called my family to come from the States. One doctor who I became very good friend’s with said I had so many adhesions it took forever to do the operations. To make a long story a little shorter I married and we adopted four little boys who are all bigger than me now. But exactly at the time of the 9/11 terrorist in New York I was back in Japan taking my sons swimming and I noticed when I kicked my legs extreme pain in my lower right abdomen. I couldn’t decide what to do as I hadn’t been to a Gyn. since my hysterectomy twenty years before, but finally I went, and boy did we get the surprise of our lives,as the doctor was finishing her examination I mentioned the pain on my lower right side, so right away she did an inter-vaginal ultra sound and she found a huge tumor in my lower right abdomen and at first she insisted it was my ovary and I said it was impossible. So she told me straight out it might be cancer and she wanted me to go to a university hospital which I did. It was the worst operation of my life,it took many hours to complete the operation because of all the old adhesions, then as I was about to be released my intestines stopped fuctioing and I had ileus. I have been in excruciating pain ever since. I’ve had to have every pain treatment available, plus over hundreds of blocks so many they can’t find a place on my back to do the epi, I’ve used every medication available, I’ve been on morphine for ten years since, last year I had a spinal stimulator implanted, and now use an electric wheel chair because the nerves are so damaged, but even the wheel chair has it’s trade off’s. I have shooting pain down my left leg, my bowels have been injured as well as my bladder by the adhesions that have ensnared the nerves. The only good position is laying down in bed, standing or sitting for long periods just lead to tears and more bed time. So Mary the answer is “yes you can have pain, and if you haven’t go as quickly as possible to a Gyn. or Surgeon and have a complete very through examinationation, you might be the one exception your doctor hasn’t seen before. My doctor was a famous cancer doctor but she had never seen a Woffarian Cyst before, but she warned me I can get cancer or more benign cyst, so don’t ignore a change in pain.I also found out I have pelvic floor symptoms and I.C. Which makes sitting and wearing tight jeans etc. Difficult. Just don’t ignore it. I suggest a trip to a University clinic if there is one in your area. Linda in Japan.

      P.S I’m starting to have different symptoms again so this time I won’t ignore them. I want to see my grandchildren. Please don’t any of you take your own lives. I lost my husband to suicide three years ago and I think my illness played a big part in his decision, he left me with a lot of guilt.

      Posted by Linda-Day-Sakamoto | September 21, 2012, 6:35 am
      • Linda,

        Thank you for your heartfelt reply. I have been to a lot of doctors and thet haven’t found much of anything. They find gallstones and I did have gallbladder removed.

        Posted by Mary | November 22, 2012, 5:19 am
    • I HAVE HAD 4 CHILDREN. MY THIRD CHILD WAS C-SECTION (THAT WAS 20 YEARS AGO). I HAVE HAD CONSISTANT PAIN ON THE LEFT SIDE OF MY SCAR SINCE. AFTER THE FIRST 7 YEARS I HAD THE OBGYN EXAMINED A BLOOD BLISTER DEVELOPE. HE DRAINED IT AND SAID IT WAS NOTHING. 8 YEARS LATER HE DID THE SAME THING. TO THIS DAY I STILL HAVE ISSUES WITH A VERY TENDER AND SORE BLOOD BLISTER (OFTEN WILL POP AND DRAIN ON ITS OWN) I HAVE HAD A REGULAR DR LOOK AT IT AND THEY SAY THERE IS NOTHING TO IT. I HAVE NOTICED IT MORE AND MORE AND IT DOES CAUSE PAIN. I CAN’T GET ANYONE TO UNDERSTAND SOMETHING IS GOING ON UNDERNEATH THE SURFACE – I DEAL WITH IT DAILY.

      Posted by Colleen Hauryski | July 17, 2013, 6:28 am
    • I now believe my post is in error. I had recent MRI and Dr said I had bulging disc in my spine. The pain radiated from back to abdomen. I am now undergoing steroid injections in spine.

      Posted by Mary | July 30, 2013, 5:31 pm
  15. I had a c-section nearly three years ago. I have been having intermittent pain which has worsened recently. I had some scans done today which showed no hernias etc. Last week my GP prescribed me a slow realeasing anti-inflammatory which has helped but the scan hurn going over the scar. I need to back to my GP in a week. I will try and lose some more weight and hopefully that will help. If not maybe surgery to remove some of the excess scar tissue. Excellent article.

    Posted by Suzanna | August 6, 2012, 2:28 am
  16. I have four children and my last one was a c section. that was almost 2 yrs ago. Ever since I have had moderate to extreme pain on the lower right and mid side of my pelvic. I have been to doctors and more doctors. They said first it was my bladder then cysts on my overy yet It feels like a muscle deep down that has been torn. Now another thing is that an hour or so after my ceserian I coughed really hard and no one had showed my the pillow thing yet and so it hurt so bad. It is the exact same place that hurts to this day.I have gone through the nerve blocks and scar tissure removal surgury,nothing works at all. The pain will go away evey once in a whille for even up to a few weeks but then comes back with a vengance.Any one have any thoughts.

    Posted by Jamie | August 16, 2012, 8:13 am
  17. I just had my 3rd Cesarean 2-1/2 weeks ago. My first two c/s recoveries were a breeze. This time, however, I experienced a horrible tearing, burning pain at the right side of my incision two days after surgery when I lunged out of bed to attend to my son who seemed to be choking in his bassinet next to me. From that moment, movement became excruciating, and I could no longer lie on my right side. Gradually the pain has diminished, and as of last night I can finally lie on my right side without pain. I was told the same thing by my doctors: the incision looks fine, nothing is amiss. But as another poster said, the pain is deep inside. It isn’t constant, but flares up for an unbearable 5 seconds, causing me to cry out and double over when I attempt to move in certain positions: rolling over in bed, climbing into bed, sitting on a soft sofa, getting up from bed or sitting. The closest any doctor came to acknowledging the problem was to suggest that I pulled a muscle and that pain reliever (Voltaren, Tylenol 3s) along with icing the area should help. This, along with time and reduced activity seems to be making a difference – my only hope is that it isn’t a recurring issue as it seems to be for so many people here. Just thought I would throw the icing idea out there as I haven’t seen it mentioned – and the pillow suggestion is a good one, to, as I found that the paid could be subdued somewhat if I held onto the area during certain position adjustments. Good luck!

    Posted by Cran | August 19, 2012, 2:43 pm
  18. I had my 2nd c-section 6 months back. I thought I recovered well from it as I didn’t seem to be having any pain. But now after 6 months I seem to be having this constant abdominal pain. The pain is no where near the incision but a few inches above it. It’s kind of throbbing from the inside. If I try pressing my stomach to actually check it then it doesn’t hurt. But getting up and or sitting down is very uncomfortable. Any ideas as to what might be causing it?

    Posted by PV | August 27, 2012, 2:13 pm
  19. hello to all my pain friends lol i wanted to share that mostly every thing everyone one person has said on there post i have my self it been 7 years as of augs 22 2012 . i have problems with my bowels my urien i constenly have uti” and they say there in no infection and it hurts the bladder and the whole right side of my stomic when i pee and it also hurts my right kidnney they said that it because of the fact that my bladder droped and i cant hold my pee to long or eles i pee on myself not willingly i have pelvick pain and the inside of the vigina canal it hurt when every it feels like it but also not to be nasty but when i get arosed and then during intercores the canale hurt and i suffer so i try to stay away from it and of cores i have a husband and can not keep it always from him but try alot not to have it cause it cause so musch pain and swelling but and i have had all types of scans to show nothing and went to the gyn and there is nothing they say they aslo trying to tell me that it from my back desies i have disk degeneration and bulging disked no fulied in it anymore and the spin is norrowing to cause neverdamge in my back but they are crazy i have this since i was 16 yrs old and i never had what i feel now but the whole lower part of my stomic is numb most of the time and when pushed on by the doc’s it hurt really bad and then i have to go to the er for the pain if i touch it lightly to the touch it hurts but if and when i push on it lightly it does not then if i wear pants wait what are those again i have not been able to wear them for 7 yrs and buttens forget it they hurt my belly butten area, seat belt for get it i am always puling them away from my lower stomick and top stomic i had my gaul bladder out when i was 20 yrs old that sergery did hurt , no afterwards hurting at least for the belly butten area and the frist c-section niether no hurting it was fast to heal and nothing hurted but of cores my side where the gaul bladder was takeing out but found out yrs latter i have had gerd and a pouch in it so gas get stuck in it and hurts very very bad, but my lower stomic it feel like its stuffed only below the belly butten is always numb i have increessed pain when i get gas or i always feel constapaied like feeling i cant eat some fuits due to this i feel like it is ripping or coming undone on the inside of the musel in there, wow it hurts when i use it and or snezze or cough and or if i am in a certain postion i cant sit on certain furiture or chairs or anything for that matter and a low car forget it is like it will eat my stiomic and cause so much pain in not funny it burns my stomic and i can’t reach with out the right side musle hurting or locking up from the right side shoulder wing around my right side to the right side of my stomic down to my kidnny i know what one user said that his wife felt all that pain because she was not numb the needle did not work i too was on the table and the novacane woreoff and i felt them pulling and tugging every part of my musel on my right side and a completely horrifing buring feeling in my stomic and then started to throw up and my head felt like it was to explode and the doc put something in the iv and i was out only to wake up with everyone gone they sent everyone home and i woke up in the intensive care uint and as i was coming to i herd the nurse talking that the doctors gave me to much medicine it was enogh to kill me i was lucky to be waking up. so i feel for you both i know what it is to be in fear no teriffied of the doctors and i only just went recently back to them now cause i cant take the pain no more and much more i do fear the side effets too cause do you see what they put in it , it can cause haullusanations suideal thought tendecs or action or can cause server blatter problem heart attacts ect do we look like ginne pigs that they can experiment on? why dont they take it an tell us how they feel and see if they get labeld of a nut job sorry i have very strong emotions about this. any who did or does any one also have pain while they are cuting up food or holding things or squshing in their stomics to fit in to any jeans or clothing? i have this all the time and the the pms i have this symtoms like two weeks before and some times weeks after havey bleeding longer periods and twice a month and now its weird 4 days for the last 2 months and is it like every 15 days for any one? it been like this since the c section and they say i have to keep a log of all my days and of the pain like what i am doing when i doing it and so forth on. its like what i say to them is not enogh or my word is not bond. i found this page by asking this same question. oh and yes i also was told like two yrs after the c sec that i have alot of scar tissue and the only way to get rid of it is more surgery does this make anysence so you fix it by creating more scar tissue? i think they had to much coffee on their watch. my next step is to ask for an mri of the stomic and the back musle to see if there is nerve damge or musle damge i know i have musle spaums on the right side since then and it get so tight that it wont stop or relese and my dr wont do anything for it oh thats becuse they said i have acid refluc so it prevent me from taking some meds and as far as the pain i am swered i am allergic to tylenal 3 and perks and mortrine. i thought i was the only one feeling this any many many dr’s thought i was nuts including my family. so thank you all i know now i am not alone sorry not try to encuorge this pain by knowing that we are all one in this hurting. and maybe we all can help one another by posting what has worked for us and what has not an maybe we can find a way out instead of the dr’s. i had no chiose but to get the frist c-section my son had a head at 14 and a half inches and beside he was transversied he was side ways, and well the last was repet of the frist they said i had to have it and kind of force me to have one even though i was aginst it so when they seen that [ you know they get paid more to do this surgery} they said my meberains was going to ruputer and i would bleed internal and even die and can kill my child from haveing her nature. sicck doctors i can rember what they said the main one you the resident doc what the F……. this thing is so frecking thick there is no way that this would have rupture this is like 8-9 inches thick she could have had it nautrlley so why did you tell me that it would ruture? ah well i am known for the sugery and they the cloth droped and i seen a baby blow tourch he was buring my skin to melt through it to get through the scar tissue cause the knife was not cutting it. so maybe this is why we all feel burning for? any thoughts

    thank you to who wrote this paper all of the things you have said is what i am feeing and much more even what the other post have said too i relly think it time that you’s the dr’s and many others rethink how you give woman c-section. i tell you my mother had two e -mergency c-sec but the old one on top of the stomic and she has had no problems at all with her stomic. it’s either that or the dr’s are getting careless of what the are doing and people are hruting for thier whole live’s while the dr’s are not and to think we paid you for this pain? i think not { this is not implying you as a person}

    Posted by kimberly hernandez | August 28, 2012, 12:03 am
  20. I’ve had one emergency c section and 3 more after that, I get a pain Time to time on top of my cut

    Posted by mari | August 31, 2012, 6:20 pm
  21. I have had 5 csections and am having alot of pain. My OB is no help and my uterus is shot from all of the surgeries. They said I had a ton of scar tissue and can no longer get a hysterectomy because my organs had all adhered to each other. I have arranged my own appts for physical therapy, message therapy, nerve blocks and chiropractor visits and nothing is helping. I can’t get any info or direction for help. I live in a tiny town and pain issues are completely taboo- it’s embarrassing to even address but I am really having a hard time and a life to keep up with and small children to take care of. Can you offer any help/direction? I am desperate.

    Posted by heather | September 26, 2012, 11:27 am
  22. I was wondering if you ever considered changing the structure of your blog?
    Its very well written; I love what youve got to say.
    But maybe you could a little more in the way of content so people could connect with
    it better. Youve got an awful lot of text for only having 1 or 2 pictures.
    Maybe you could space it out better?

    Posted by How To Have A Baby Girl | September 26, 2012, 6:28 pm
  23. We feel we are fighting a losing battle. My daughter had a cholecystectomy July 2011 and has been left with a debilitating pain much worse that the symptoms of the gallbladder issues. She has seen 17 doctors, ranging from OB/GYN, GI, Pain Management, Neurosurgeon, Internal Medicine. She has been to UTSW and Scott and White in Temple, Texas, and has had 5 Prolotherapy injections as well as Neural Therapy injections. My daughter has had to move back home and is unable to work. She is a 27 year old, petite young lady. She has also gone through physical therapy with no success. She is on Nortriptolene, and has been for over a year. She can tell a significant difference if she misses a dose. She is unable to tollerate Percocett, the Tens Unit caused severe skin irritation, and the Lidocaine patch doesn’t provide much relief. Recently, a surgeon suggested he clip the nerve, which we believe to be the iliohypogastric nerve. She has a appointment with him to discuss this possibility later this week. I am an RN and very uneasy about more surgery. What I would like an opinion on, is should she have the nerve clipped, what are the “bad things” that can result, and are we at the point that we should take that risk to finally give her some relief?

    Posted by Sally Day | October 22, 2012, 7:42 am
    • I had 2 csection in 2 years. After my second ome 10mths ago I habe been in constant pain right next to my scar on the right..it started the morning after my csection …I can’t be touch or wear clothes on the area…when.its cold outside or damp or really hot I am in excruciating pain! …I’ve had nerve blocks and nerve burning and nothing has helped …I’m now on long terms disability and can not work ..
      I take neurontin and amnitrytiline at bed time but can not tolerate it during the day…I’ve seen 4 different pain management drs who have done.nerve injection that have not helped at all… this has never happened to anyone elsd in my OB practice …I hate that this happened to me and am deathly afarid I will br stuck like this.my whole life.
      .

      Posted by lea | October 25, 2012, 6:52 am
      • If anyone knows if this will ever get better please let me know …thr burning stabbing shocking pain has ruined my life!

        Posted by lealea | October 25, 2012, 6:56 am
  24. I had my second c-section 2 years ago and from then I have had pain from my c- section scar to the side of my body and going down the front and back of my leg all the way to my foot. I see a chiropractor regularly but have found one who has made a world of difference. He does graston which breaks up the scar tissue on my scar and abdomen which has helped tremendously. He also works on the soft tissue and the pain in the front of my leg and back is almost gone. I still have some pain but I know if I keep getting treatment eventually it will all go away. I do exercise regularly too so Thayer definitely helps the core get stronger. The chiropractor is a sports medicine chiropractor so you need to find one of those. If they want to constantly adjust you then you are at the wrong office. Hope this helps. Lucille

    Posted by Lucille | October 31, 2012, 12:47 pm
  25. Hi I had a c-section about 4woe ago and I am having very bad pains on my right side, and it progresses into my lower right back its a sharp stabbing pain. I am having sharp stabbing pain right now and just took some tylenol to help but no such luck, I am in a a lot of pain wanted to know if that is normal?

    Posted by jasemine | November 13, 2012, 4:30 pm
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    Posted by Joyce | November 14, 2012, 4:19 am
  27. I have been having pain in my scar for years and I’m about to see someone because I just cant take it anymore. The pain is only in one part of my scar and it has a black spot and hurts especially the week after my period ends. I dont even do ab excercises anymore because I am scared of doing damage. I had my last child six years ago and it was my second c-section. I was told I have a lot of internal scar tissue and I guess maybe that is the problem. I use topical pain gel but it doesnt really help. Just had it with this pain every single month. I think I may have to pursue surgery to fix the nerves as mentioned above.

    Posted by Denise | November 29, 2012, 1:34 pm
  28. My son will be 10 in March (2013), and I STILL have pain at the site of my c-section. I had a doctor mention adhesions, but said nothing more about it. We have been trying to have another baby since March 2004 (my son’s first birthday), and have been unsuccessful. Could the pain at my scar have anything to do with my infertility? We have been heartbroken for almost 9 years and have not found any answers at all. Please help!

    Posted by Melinda G. | December 2, 2012, 7:16 pm
  29. I will just explain alittle of my situation so you get the gull picture of whats going on. I was pregnant, 10days overdue, went to hospital to be inducedat 8am by 7pm they were going to send me home for not dilating much then my water broke and i finally got to 10cm. I pushed hard for over an hr with no progress babys hrt rt increased and i had a fever so i hada csection. That went fine its what happened next that didnt go so well. After they got baby out (3:57am mon)they started to work on getting my uterus to contract back down it wouldnt. They worked on me for 2hrs massaging my uterus, injecting me with the max they could of anything they could to help with no success i had lost a 1&1/2ltrs of blood and the dr looked over the drape and said they have to do hysterectomy so i was put out. I woke up to find out the dr that came in did B-lynch compression suture instead to save the uterus. Long story short i ended up with endometritis, infection in uterus & incision a hematoma under incision, bled for over 9mnths straight after and now its been over 2yrs and im still in major pain in the uterus and the drs wont do a hysterectomy or scopes to see how much scar tissue damage there is and tell us not sure if it would be safe to have another baby. Lets just say its been an emotional/painful rollercoaster ride for 2yrs and we dont have any answers as to why so im trying to see if anyone can give me some information. Ive even been trying to do kegels this past 2 weeks and i end up in so much pain for two days I cant continue and everytime i do it i get a shooting cold tingling sensation up my entire body on every squeeze.

    Posted by Kathy | January 6, 2013, 7:08 pm
  30. I have had lots of pain where I had my c section for the last 7 years. It burns really bad most of the time. It always feels like a freshly done surgery. On a scale from 1 to 10, its a constant 6 sometimes 7. It hurts when a get up cough pretty much everything. I just want the pain to go away.

    Posted by Kristin Winslow | January 11, 2013, 10:24 pm
  31. I had cs but 1wk later i feel pain,stomach,swoln ft . Help

    Posted by Irene | January 25, 2013, 9:49 pm
    • I treat C-section pain for a living . Research evidence across an international clinic sample showed a 70% decrease in C-section pain after 1 treatment. see http://www.mpstherapy.com

      Posted by Tamra Ellis | January 26, 2013, 12:41 pm
    • Irene, if your C/S was one week ago, it’s of course likely you’d still have pain and a swollen stomach to a small degree. If you are concerned, you must call your doctor at this stage! You could have normal trapped gas, abnormal accumulations of gas from inside, infections, etc. Are you taking your pain meds? Why post here now? Call your doctor and ask to be seen in the office within the next few days. And take your temperature so you can report what it is to them. You should have gotten discharge instructions from the hospital that covered these issues. Good luck, and don’t wait if you are feeling something is abnormal.

      Posted by latterlifemidwife | January 26, 2013, 1:50 pm
    • Sorry to ear am from jamaica an i have been using some home remedy to help with the pain,such as a hot water baths,bathing around the area with warm water as warm as u can bear it with some salt in the water.

      Posted by Chevel Johnson | May 27, 2014, 9:00 am
  32. I am 29 years old and had 3 chldren in 5 years. My first 2 where natural but my little girl was a c-section. I decided to have my tubes tied while they were doing this. That was almost 6 years ago now and when i get my period I get a really bad pain just in my right side. It is not the same pain as cramps and some tines it hurts so bad I want to cry. Does any one have any ideas on what this could be?

    Posted by Stephanie Hagan | February 5, 2013, 6:59 pm
  33. I also had a c-section 3 years ago.I heard that after it,one should go through a vaginal car wash to clean up blood that has leaked out after surgery,they never did that to me. Could this be the reason to why im experiencing a painful menstruation? The pain is too much just below my navel and on my left hand site. Please help me out

    Posted by Lerato | February 23, 2013, 12:36 pm
  34. hi there i had a kidney uot 2 half yrs ago in so much pain in the groin pelvis vagina left leg and foot stomach back tryed everything nothing helping can anyone help me .pat.

    Posted by pat dalgleish | March 8, 2013, 9:48 pm
  35. Dr. Gunter,
    I need your expertise with a problem my wife is having. She had a Csection 26 months ago. My wife is 24 and great health. Not overweight. She had pain following intercourse for a few months after delivery, but it went away. It came back with a vengence about 9 months ago. She hurts with most sexual positions. Her pain is on her left lower abdomen a little below the ovary. Her GYN thinks she has a nerve trapped in her Csection scar. She had an injection by a pain management Dr. in the location of pain and another in the actual Csection scar. The injections were about 5 days apart. Neither helped at all. She was a little numb for a few hours after the injection in the location of pain, but neither injection helped the pain during and after intercourse. Her GYN also injected the sight of pain and she hurt severely for a few days, but saw no benefit from the injection he did. He tried her on some pain meds and otc meds. He also tried her on depression meds and lyrica. None helped. (she is not very compliant with taking meds, she just doesn’t see a point in taking something to cover up a symptom and not actually fix anything….not to mention they didn’t help) The GYN next did a scope after none of these other things worked. He found and burned off a very small amount of endometriosis. It is now 3 months after the scope and there is no change in her pain. The pain management Dr said he saw no point in injecting her again since the other 3 haven’t helped. He once mentioned phenol, but said he didn’t want to do something that drastic. His most recent suggestion was a TENS unit. All her tests have been normal (pelvic, abdominal US, intravaginal US) We are very desperate and any suggestions you have would be greatly appreciated. I honestly believe the GYN doesn’t have an answer and can’t bring himself to admit it and to refer her out. We need a solution, not just something to mask the symptoms.

    Posted by Shawn | March 18, 2013, 2:24 pm
    • hi shawn you may want your wife to try going to a neuroloigist and ask for gabpentin is a medicane for a person that has diabetes but is does work on nerve pain and of corse the most bothersome side effect are sleeping at night this is wonderful but during the day not so much and you can also aked for cream a local anesthetic cream this also might help the out side but don’t get in down where the sun dont shine theat i leave to your mind. i suggest this to you both more for her sake then yours i know your dieing to have what you do with your wife but as i am a wife i can
      and know what i have felt to try to please the hubby and yet feel so much pain this is a rock and a hard place for woman and yet feel plesure for our self . i too experience this for the last 7 years and it only get worse then bad then better then worse then wow i can go on for ever but i wont hope it helps both of you but fact is sadly there is no way of fixing never damge your nevers were and are growing back the wrong way or they could be pinch or cut and held the wrong way in turn always going to send the wrong singnal back to your body with either pain numbness no felling and buring and or server pain unbareable. this pain on your lower left side i have on my right side a little below my overies and almost to the hip but yet most dr ever the one i sugested have no ideal but some others dr have the opinion that a lot of woman are comeing in with this pain oly after the bikin cut was inveted so was it helpful to us well yes no scar visable but lots and lost of pain which is better the scar or pain?

      Posted by kimberly hernandez | March 27, 2013, 7:17 pm
  36. Well like many of you I had have constant pain in my scar.( my c/s was 7 years ago)… But with mine I have a lot of scar tissue accumulating in the right side of my scar( the scar tissue is about 2 fingers width and about 4 -5 inches long. It has begun to create an overhang of skin that is very unsightly in my opinion). And is very painful to touch.It hurts all the time to some degree, But leaning against the counter to brush my teeth hurts so bad that it almost brings me to tears..I have tried to massage the scar and that just increases the pain i have. I have not noticed that it has made any change what so ever in the scar tissue or the pain. Unfortunately I am allergic to Ibuprofen. And have adverse side affects to most pain meds. (I/E hives, entire body itching, dry mouth, and asthma related issues) I am very concerned that this pain will continue, its more in my day to day activities when something touches it.. I have discussed it with my OB/GYN and they just say,” its scar tissue and sometimes it can cause pain.”.At this point I dont feel like I am being taken seriously I have been complaining about it since a year after my c/s… I dont mind trying the tens unit.. But what exactly will it do? Will it break up some of the scar tissue ? will it help with the pain when I touch it? I believe my pain is directly related to the amount of scar tissue that has been accumulating over the past 7 years. My last question is what do I say to my OB/GYN to get them to take this more seriously? Also i do not experience any more pain during my menstrual cycle….nor with sex. But I do need to find some relief soon before i loose my ever lovin mind. I am currently taking anti anxiety/depressants meds… I have lost over 30lbs in the past year. And have lost a lot of emotional stress but the pain still persists and seems to be worsening over time instead of decreasing. Please any advice is welcome, I am a single mother of 3 boys and need to be able to keep up with them physically and hopefully one day with out pain.

    Posted by Julie | March 21, 2013, 9:56 pm
    • Hello Julie,

      The TENS unit will not break up scar tissue. Please to go http://www.mpstherapy.com and look on the video clip that shows the use of the Dolphin Neurostim that is used to break up scar tissue for a pacemaker scar. Only the application of DIRECT CURRENT (TENS is Alternating current) will break up the underlying scar tissue in seconds, and there is NO NEED for medication. I do this for a living, as a regulated healthcare professional. It takes a matter of minutes, is non-invasive, drug free and completely works. I treat C-sections, epiziotomies,burns, mastectomies, breast augmentation and other “failed surgury” scars daily and the resulting pain is usually due to scar tissue binging up the fascia and constricting the associated nerves. I teach entire courses on this and have co-authored a book that is due to come out in the next 6 months or so. .

      Posted by Tamra Ellis | March 24, 2013, 2:57 pm
      • Hi Tamara,

        I am living in Auckland, New Zealand and have been trying to find a clinic here that can help me with my severe pains around the C-section stitches. I have had 2 c-sections and my last one was 2.5 yrs back. Since then I have been having this pain from my stitches going down to my groin and buttocks but in the last week it has been so severe that I cant even walk.
        I have had regular visits to my GP, Gyn, ultrasound scans done but everything comes clear and all they do is just prescribe pain killers.
        Please help as I have 2 small kids that I need to take care of and I am feeling completely helpless

        Posted by Valentine | June 16, 2013, 12:11 am
    • hi julie go see a neuroligist and ask for gabapentin and a local anesthetic cream for the day gabapentin is for people with diabetes but it is also giving for nerve pain it only works on the nereves if it is indeed nevers or you wont get any relif from it but is is not just scar tissue is it you nereves that were growing back wrong like a plant root al diffrent ways due to the tuisse build up it traped them and made them grow in all dirctions to send wrong singels to your brain to induce pain where there should be none. hope this helps and what ever you do stop taking the anti depressant they will not help for this type of condistion. this is not a ment case its a real one and your body is telling you and that something is wrong but the dr hve not cule but the neuroligist does go see one tell him all that is related to this and see what he says to you and ask about these two meds . it has been 7 yrs for me and evry one on my family incuding dr have thought i was nuts till i pushed to see if it was the nevers look up on googel for facts about nevers being cut during a c section see what it says. hope this helps good luck

      Posted by kimberly hernandez | March 27, 2013, 7:32 pm
  37. its being 2months now that i had a ceasar and i am still numb in some places of my abdomen and i get sharp pins and needles feeling like electric shocks its becoming very uncomfortable . Please let me know whats the cause of this and when will it stop for me to feel normal again.. And is it normal for me to feel that way o is it something for me to be worried about

    Posted by maraisa sarkhot | March 27, 2013, 10:38 am
  38. hi i am 3months pp i had a c section and i still get those pins and needles feeling around my incision… Is this normal is it somethin for me to be worried about.. Why am i getting those feelings please let me know how long am i gonna be feeling this way and what medication can help this feeling to go away

    Posted by maraisa sarkhot | April 9, 2013, 3:56 am
  39. I had a csection 14 months ago… about a month afterwards I experienced some pretty severe pain on my lower right side about an inch up and to the right of my scar. I went to the OB and she did ultrasounds, etc and didn’t find anything alarming, so it was deduced that it was due to overdoing it and the muscles being re-torn. Since then it seems like every time I work out I have this dull ache there that is persistent. Is this pain due to the csection or might it be something else? I haven’t gone back to the dr to check on it because I hate to go in for something that is not treatable. If this sounds like it is from the csection is there anything that can be done?

    Posted by Danielle | April 16, 2013, 11:13 pm
  40. I had one cesarean in 2000 no problems, had my second in 2011 no problems, then had my third in 2012. I had no side pain after delivery like previous two and thought I was lucky but now the whole middle of my stomach is partially numb and in wake up every morning to chronic lower back pain. Anyone know why? Please help.

    Posted by Jentry Wright | May 13, 2013, 11:02 pm
  41. I have had four c- sections. And i have the burning and poping. For two week after my period. And some times its so bad i cant move with out peeing on myself from how bad the pain is..i dont have any money to see. A doctoer is there any home remidies that might help me.

    Posted by michelle espinosa | July 30, 2013, 5:25 pm
  42. Dear all,
    I am an afghan Gye/Obs doctor, advice is to all that you should go to a specialist and than if there is no any special problemmy you do not pay attention for theses kind pain because it is very coomen among the women who passed C.S. Try to keep you happy and ignore the pain it will be decreased.If you tinking about you will get the pain emotionaly and will be worsed.

    Posted by Dr. Farhat Sahak, GYN/OBS | August 29, 2013, 12:17 am
  43. I had my son by c-section at 26 weeks due to Pre-eclampsia. I still have scar pain a year later but only prior to and during my menstrual cycle. The area is sore when pressed on and my clothes make the area feel raw. My obgyn says it has nothing to do with the c- section but I never had pain before. Glad to know I am not crazy. I just wish I could get some relief.

    Posted by Ashlee Lewis | September 8, 2013, 7:50 am
  44. Where do you practice? Or what type of Dr do I need to seek out for treatment for this?

    Posted by Jo | October 2, 2013, 9:32 pm
  45. hey folks am currently investigating how to convince my doctor that the pain isn’t all in my head….4 years of pain after csection
    1. laporoscopy
    2 .Vein Embolization
    3. House full of pills
    4 .Cat Scan
    Can’t exercise,hold my side when i cough,panic when i sneeze…..I WANT MY LIFE BACK!!!

    Posted by lisa | November 1, 2013, 5:15 pm
  46. I had my c-section 3 months ago(1 August) and suddenly I start feeling this stinging,burning feeling around the scar area. It gets worse when I sit up or there is any other tension on my belly. It is very sensitive around the area and becomes quite painful. I hate going to doctors,but will obviously go if it is really necessary. Any advice? Can the pain go away by itself?

    Posted by Desiree | November 3, 2013, 12:05 am
    • I’m so glad to know I’m not alone!! I had my 1st c-section in 2005 no problems but than I had my second in 2009 and my body hasn’t been right since. The stinging pain and soreness I feel on a daily basis is unbearable. I have fibroids as well but I don’t think the fibroids have anything to do with the pain I’m experiencing….. Doctors never seem to be of any help and the only relief I find that works for me is taking oxycodene….. My sex life is nonexistent with my husband because of this, if I knew having a csection would cause this much havoc I would have tried to have my second baby vaginal, vaginal birth was not an option for me for my first child bc he was early and had his own set of health problems and having him vaginally could’ve put too much stress on him according to my doctors….. I just wish there was an answer for this pain!!

      Posted by Ash Wilson | November 5, 2013, 7:41 am
  47. I’ve had crippling pain from my c-section which took place 3 years ago. After a doctor finally knew what was wrong with me (which took 2 years) At my three year mark he put in an implant device. But, now that some time has passed I’m wondering about a more perminate fix. The implant device shocks me a lot when I move certain ways, I have residual pain above the wires (it was placed in my abdomen) and its a pain to charge. Yes it keeps me mostly out of pain, but I want a full life where I’m not having to remember if I charged a battery in me, or did I remember to take the device with me on a trip. I had an pain doctor/anestisologist do the implant. So, my question is, if I’m looking for someone to burn the nerve endings should I seek out a nurosurgeon or a pain specialist?

    Posted by Lauren Merchian | November 15, 2013, 9:53 pm
  48. I’m having the same problem i had a csection a month ago it was an emergency csection. i am having pai. thru my in scar and into my right hip also it hurts more when i pee n when i move my bowels i have been to the emergency room. multiple times cuz it gets so bad. my period just started n i am having more problems now n its so bad i don’t know what to do i have an appt with my gyn and I’m hoping shr can tell me more of what’s going on… someone please if you have answrs please tell me….

    Posted by Megan Belford | December 6, 2013, 7:49 pm
  49. Dr Gunter,
    I’ve had 2 c-sections, 2003-2008. I’ve had No complications with either one. The only issue I experience is that I always feel gassy or full in my lower abdomen. I have felt this ways since the 2nd c-section. Also after sex I feel extremely full. No pain, just bloated feeling. What could that be?

    Posted by Briant | January 8, 2014, 12:59 am
  50. Dr. Gunter it is so impressive that you are both a gynecologist and a pain specialist. I hope you have a bit of direction for me. I didn’t have a C-section but had a fibroid tumor removed-same incision right? then diagnosed with hernia on scar. I had a hernia repair and ended much worse. I’ve been diagnosed with ilioinguinal/iliohypogastric neuromas. my case is a bit complicated in that the pain often refers to my bladder. I have previously diagnosed with IC. However the bladder pain only happens when the scar pain starts up. I have had several nerve blocks over the years. I had success in the past but the last one I had has made my pain worse. I’m considering surgery but I’m very scared. I have never tried an epidural type of pain block. Do you have a referral for me for a doctor such as yourself in the LA area?

    Posted by Martha cordoba | March 10, 2014, 5:36 pm
  51. I had my c section 3 years ago and almost 2 months before I felt strong pain in my bladder, stomach, left kidney, upper side of my stomach and lower side of my stomach.
    a small lump I found in my abdomen close to the surgery location I was under stress because of the lump I found several doctors told me the lump is under my skin and it is fat and is not dangerous.
    but still I feel pain in the location where the lump is located.
    can anyone help me or share if they the same lump in their abdomen.
    the doctor

    diagnosed the infection in my pelvic and I got antibiotics but still the pain and burning is improving.

    Posted by Huda | April 7, 2014, 2:38 am
  52. Hi, I had my baby 7years ago via c-section and lately my scar has been painful to the point that I pee every now and then because the scar hurts if the’s even small amount of liquid in my bladder should I be concern?
    Khensani from South Africa

    Posted by khensani | April 11, 2014, 7:18 pm
  53. Hello my name is Nicholas two years ago my wife had a c section ever since then she has had almost unbearable pain in the the left side of her stomach I think around the intestinal area it’s hard to the touch and I’m extremely worried about this because she says it feels as tho the doctors left gauze packing in her is this possible and if so wat can we do or who might we see to alleviate this plz help me and my wife

    Posted by Nicholas | April 18, 2014, 10:22 am
  54. My painful “scar tissue” ended up being an endometrium mass in my abdominal rectus muscle. Over 30 doctor visits in 33 months and I finally got it diagnosed. During my cesarean some endometrium tissue (uterus lining) remained in my abdominal muscle. Because of lack of awareness, doctors misdiagnosed me for so long. My name is Ana, to read my story and see why I started my mission on raising awareness of this overlooked cesarean risk please visit my website http://www.iatrogenicendo.com/
    Remember any painful “scar tissue” lump above your cesarean incision with pain in synced with your menstrual cycle is not “scar tissue”. In most cases the lump is most painful during the ovulation time. I have no endometriosis, simply the endometrioma mass they found was the direct implantation during my cesarean. I’ve ended up having a 8cm of my left abdominal rectus muscle since there is no cure and it’s a progressive condition. I encourage everyone to demand biopsy of their lumps.
    I’m trying to raise awareness of this overlooked cesarean risk so I can help as many women as I can. We need to bring attention to something that is overdue, this condition needs to be included as part of the diagnosis when postpartum problem arise.

    Posted by Ana Gri | May 9, 2014, 8:58 am
  55. I am 34 years old. I have had 6 c sections. I am experiencing pain very low. It is uncomfortable. After my 5th C section I didn’t have this pain that I am experiencing now. Once a month I get this gut grinching pain, and I must have sex to ease the throbbing pain. During sex it seems like a gallon of female ejaculation oozes out. Sounds gross right, but it’s the truth. If I’m in the grocery store shopping or where ever I am I will get this killer pain. After sex it’s like some type of relief. Other then that my lower abdomen aches and pains just throbbs all day. I can’t get comfortable when I bend forward. I have to lean back. I took Advil and it took away a little of the pain but it feels like a tender ball is in front of me. I think it’s my uterus that is so sensitive. I have been working out lately at the gym and trying to improve my health. I just don’t like this uncomfotable feeling. I will be making a appointment with my OBGYN soon.

    Posted by Asia | May 15, 2014, 9:30 pm
  56. I have had my cut for 4 years an i still feel pain in the an around the area,sometimes so deep in there its like something is on the inside tearing the area away,sex is awfull cause of the pain an the cut had to be re-opened due to the fact that it got infected…..but its still not feeling like i dont have to be worrying about the pain that may or may not hurt

    Posted by Chevel Johnson | May 27, 2014, 7:12 am
  57. Thanks for this insightful blog post. I’m leaving a message here in the hopes you receive it… I’ve been trying to reach you through your hospital office for two days with no luck- the Kaiser bureaucracy appears impenetrable.

    My ob-gyn surgeon recently diagnosed me with post c-section nerve entrapment (diagnosis by process of elimination). I’m 10 weeks post-partum and frustrated by the pain. I’m looking for a second opinion, and to talk to someone about pain management. I found your blog post, and noticed that you have a practice in San Francisco. I live in the area and would very much appreciate it if you would see me as a patient, even for just a consultation. Thank you in advance for any help!

    Posted by Christine | June 13, 2014, 3:11 pm
  58. Hi dr ! Was wondering if you knew of any doctors with similar background to yourself in the London area? Your article completely inline with what I’m experiencing, and am finding myself more knowledgable than some of the pain specialists because I’m using it as an example and telling them how to treat me! I’m yet to see anyone who has come across my situation ( or anything that resembles it!) before!!!

    Posted by S smith | June 19, 2014, 2:41 pm
  59. Hi. I’ve had 2 c-sections and its been a year since the last one and I do have the odd pain near the scare that feels like a deep paper cut once in a while. The area was numb for about 6 months an inch in each direction from the scar. My concern is that when I lift anything over 30lbs or stand for long periods of time or even crunches..anything that uses tummy muscles..I feel pain for days but not the tummy muscles.. Its my uterus.. I feel it up inside too its sore. It feels like my uterus has been beaten up and some times I start spotting a day after heavy lifting. My doctor sent me back to the surgeon and we did an ultrasound everything was OK and my surgeon refuses to see me for the issue now unless I lose my baby belly. Help! This isn’t in my head!

    Posted by jen | July 6, 2014, 9:56 am
  60. Been in pain for 5half years now after c section no one can help me please can you give me help to find out what wrong

    Posted by tracey rankint | September 2, 2014, 9:21 am
  61. I had a C-section in December, 2011…from time to time I experience whole body numbness-needle like pain is all I feel in my whole body especially when am in contact with something…I can’t even taste anything when am in this state..this state lasts for a week or two…months go by and then it appears again. I have been to the doctors and have been told it is an effect of the anaesthetic they used hence they can do nothin about it, I just have to indure the pain…but the pain is just too much and lasts for long…

    Posted by Katya | November 16, 2014, 9:45 pm

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Pingback: Persistent pain after a c-section: when is it muscle pain and what can you do? « Dr. Jen Gunter - May 10, 2012

  2. Pingback: I Thought I Was | Second Phase - December 11, 2012

  3. Pingback: Abortion, health care, HPV, chronic pain: what I’ve learned from my most popular posts of 2012 « Dr. Jen Gunter - January 1, 2013

  4. Pingback: Persistent pain after a c-section: when is it nerve pain and what can you do? « My Oxymoronic Medical Mystery - January 14, 2013

  5. Pingback: My top 5 posts from 2013 (it’s all about the lube) | Dr. Jen Gunter - December 31, 2013

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