caput succedaneum definition: cephalohematoma, Treatment, Pictures

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Caput succedaneum

It is a swelling of the scalp in newborn babies.  Caput succedaneum is mainly due to the pressure from the vaginal wall during a head-first delivery.

Caput succedaneum Causes

It is more likely to form during a long or hard delivery. It is more common after the membranes have been broken. This is because the fluid in the amniotic sac doesn’t providing a cushion effect for the head of the baby. Vacuum extraction is done because of a difficult in birth. So that it can also increase the chances of a caput succedaneum.

Caput succedaneum

A caput succedaneum is detected by ultrasound, even before a labor or a delivery begins. It has been found to be as early of 31 weeks of pregnancy. This is due to an early rupturing of the membranes and having too little amniotic fluid. It is less likely that a caput will form if the membranes stay intact with the walls.

Prolonged pressure on the dilated cervix and on the vaginal walls on the baby’s head causes puffiness, swelling and bruising. These are the main symptoms of caput succedaneum. A difficult and long labor with a lot of pushing pressure can cause this condition. The usage of vacuum suction and forceps can also increase the risk of this type of swelling.

Swelling of the scalp may be more in case of the more amniotic sac membranes rupture early in labor. In some of the cases, if the membranes’ rupturing is very early or if there is too little fluid in the amniotic sac and the mother’s pelvic bones will put high pressure on the child’s head. As a result, this type of scalp swelling may occur before labor and can be seen in

Caput succedaneum Symptoms

  • Soft and puffy swelling on the scalp of a newborn infant
  • Possiblebruising or the color change on the swelling area
  • Swelling is may extend to both sides of the scalp
  • Swelling that is mostly seen on the portion of the head which comes out first
  • The main symptom of caput succedaneum is puffiness under the scalp skin. The skin is swollen and soft to Press on it. The swelling may be on the one side or may be extend over the midline of the scalp. The effects are mostly on the part of the skull that was the first come down from the birth canal.
  • There may be some bruising, but this is not as extensive as in cephalohematoma. Once the swelling goes down, you can notice that your baby’s head is slightly pointed, due to the pressure on the bones of the head. This should go away over time. The bones of the baby head are not fused and can move easily without damage.

Other complications

The swelling may increase the risk of infant jaundice, which is yellowing of the skin mainly due to excess bilirubin presence in the blood. This should clear up without any treatment within two to three weeks. Untreated jaundice can lead to serious health issues, so make sure your child’s doctor addresses your concerns about the jaundice.

Caput succedaneum Treatment

No treatment is needed. The problem mostly goes away on its own within a few days or a week.

cephalohematoma vs caput succedaneum

It is swelling of the scalp in a newborn. It is mainly due the pressure from the vaginal wall during a head-first delivery.

Cephalhematoma is a collection of the blood between the periosteum of a skull bone and the bone itself. It mainly occurs one or both sides of the head. Sometimes it will form over the occipital bone. The swelling with cephalhematoma is not seen at birth but it develops within the first 24 -48 hours after birth.

caput succedaneum pictures

caput succedaneum

caput succedaneum

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