A Caesarean birth is the delivery of a baby (or babies) through a cut (or incision), made by a doctor through the woman's belly and uterus. The placenta is also delivered through the same surgical incision immediately after the baby is born.
A Caesarean is a major abdominal operation that can only be performed by a doctor with surgical and / or obstetric qualifications. This is usually an obstetrician or a senior obstetric registrar working at the hospital. Local doctors or GP's and midwives cannot perform a Caesarean operation. A Caesarean birth is often referred to as a 'Lower Segment Caesarean Section' by caregivers (written as LSCS) or a 'Caesarean section' (or CS).
If a Caesarean is booked before the woman goes into labour then it is termed as an 'Elective Caesarean Section' or a 'Planned Caesarean'. If the Caesarean is done after the labour has started it is referred to as an 'Emergency Caesarean Section', even though it may not actually be a true emergency, rather it was unplanned.