Can a C-section be a life-threatening process for low-lying placenta cases?

Q. I have a low-lying placenta. Will C-section be a life-threatening process for me?

Answered by
Dr. Priyadarshini Tripathy
and medically reviewed by Dr. Preetha J
This is a premium question & answer published on Oct 29, 2020

Hi doctor,

I have a partial placenta, which is lying low.



Welcome to

I went through your ultrasound report (attachment removed to protect patient identity) regarding the low lying placenta. Many women (about 1 in 20) will be told their placenta is low at 20 to 25 weeks. Still, as the uterus stretches with the growing baby, the distance between the placenta's lowest edge and the cervix will increase. The placenta is clear of the cervix, and vaginal birth is perfectly safe. More than 95% of the placenta moves away from the cervix by the time of delivery. In almost 90% of cases, the placenta will be clear of the cervix by 32 weeks' gestation and almost 96% by 36 weeks. You can do another scan at 32 weeks to confirm the placental localization. I hope this answers your query. Feel free to reach out with any further questions.

Hi doctor,

Thank you for your reply. Yesterday the person who took the scan had said that bleeding might happen since the placenta is lying low. It scared me. Moreover, my first pregnancy is a normal delivery. My question is, in case of cesarean section performed for the above reason. Is it a life-threatening process for the cesarean section performed for a low lying placenta?



Welcome back to

As I mentioned above, the placenta will move away from the cervix in the latter part of pregnancy. Just in case it does not move (which is rare), then the cesarean section is performed, and it is not life-threatening. There is a risk of bleeding, but it will be managed well. Do not worry about it. Everything will be fine. Take care.

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