C-section Scar Smells: Tips To Reduce Infection Risk

Woman with a scar after C-Section on her tommy

One of the most common delivery methods for childbirth is the cesarean section or C-section. Although C-sections are a safe and effective way to deliver a baby, many women are concerned about the healing process. They wonder if it is normal to experience an odor from the incision area. In this article, we will explore the causes of C-section incision odor and provide advice on how to deal with it.

Should I Worry If My C-Section Incision Smells Bad?

Normally a c-section scar should not smell as long as it is kept clean. But if it does emit a foul smell despite taking primary wound care precautions, a Horrible smell and abdominal discomfort combined could indicate infections. Keep reading, as we will discuss in detail how to identify c-section scar infections and how to avoid them.

Steps To Identify C-Section Incision Infection

A cesarean section (c-section) is a surgical procedure in which a baby is delivered through incisions in the abdomen and uterus. After a c-section, the incision site needs to be monitored for signs of infection. If any of the below signs are present, it is important to seek medical assistance immediately.

Monitoring The C-Section Incision

Monitor the incision for redness, swelling, or tenderness. If you notice any of these symptoms, contact your doctor or midwife to discuss them.


You might experience some odor coming from your c-section scar. It’s important to check for any bad odor coming from the incision. If your c-section incision smells like something is rotting, you should call your doctor immediately.


Look for any discharge from the incision that is yellow, green, or brown. Clear fluid discharge after a cesarean section (c-section) is normal, but if the discharge appears yellow or green, it could manifest an infection. Call your doctor immediately if you see anything other than a clear discharge.


Take your temperature regularly, as fever-like symptoms may indicate an infection.


Note any changes in your overall health, such as fatigue or decreased appetite.

Redness And Burning Of Scar

If your c-section scar feels hot, red, and painful, it could signify cellulitis. Cellulitis is an infection of the skin and tissue below it.

Steps To Take Care At Home To Reduce The Risk Of Infection

C-section incisions are major surgical wounds that need to be cared for properly to help prevent infection. Infections are serious and potentially dangerous complications that can occur after a c-section. Fortunately, there are several steps you can take at home to help ensure your incision and scar tissue heals properly and remains free from infection.

Keep It Clean

Keep the wound site clean and dry. Gently wash the area with plain soap and warm water once a day and pat dry with a clean towel.

Loose Clothes

Wear clean, loose-fitting clothes. Too-tight clothes that rub against the incision can irritate and delay healing. So avoid wearing tight clothes that may irritate you.

Avoid Strenuous Activities

Exercise and heavy lifting can cause too much strain on the incision and should be avoided for at least six weeks to let the scar heal properly as it could injure the weakened scar tissue.

Change The Dressing Regularly

Change the dressing of your c-section wound daily or when it gets wet or dirty.

Overall Health

Take care of your overall health. Eat healthily and make sure to get enough sleep.

Check For Signs Of Infection

Check for signs of infection. Look for redness, swelling, warmth, and increased pain in the area. If any of these signs appear, contact your doctor.

Regular Checkups

See your doctor for regular check-ups. Your doctor will check your incision to make sure it is healing properly.

FAQs on C-section Incision Smells bad

What Should I Do If My C-Section Incision Opens?

If your c-section incision opens, you must contact your doctor immediately. Your doctor can assess the situation and determine the best course of action. Depending on the severity of the wound, your doctor may recommend that you have it re-stitched or use a topical antibiotic cream. They may also suggest that you take antibiotics to help prevent infection.

Can My Scar Get Infected Years Later?

After your surgery, taking the appropriate steps to reduce the risk of infection in your c-section scar is important. These steps should be taken in the weeks and months following your cesarean procedure. While it is rare, a c-section incision can become infected years later. To avoid this, it’s best to check your Scar periodically and keep the area hydrated with moisturizer. If you suspect your scar has become infected years later, seek medical attention immediately to ensure there are no underlying causes and get the necessary treatment.

How To Get Rid Of The C-Section Incision Smell

The smell of your c-section incision is normal, but it shouldn’t be too strong or have a foul odor. Some women get a fishy smell, while others get an ammonia scent. If you notice a new unpleasant smell, it could be due to yeast infection. You should contact your doctor as soon as possible so that they can diagnose what might be causing it.

Why Is My C-Section Scar Red And Smelly?

The C-section scar can get infected if bacteria are in the skin—and when the bacteria spread, the uterus may become infected. Most patients show signs within the first week after surgery. A C-section infection can occur by causing redness on the inside.

How do I know If My C-Section Incision Is Infected?

Symptoms associated with the post-cesarean injury; The abdomen hurts badly, redness incision area, swollen incisions, pain at an incision point that never disappears, a fever above 100oF (38oC), vaginally soiled.