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Driving after a caesarean section

There are a lot of misconceptions around caesarean sections. Probably the biggest one is when you can drive after having one. The great myth about caesars is that you can’t drive for six weeks after having one. I’m here to tell you today, that is absolutely nonsense.

When can you drive after having a caesar?

The important point about this is that there is no one hard and fast rule that applies to everybody. Recovery from a caesar varies from person to person so it may be that you take between two weeks and six weeks to recover to a point that you can drive but typically, far more commonly it’s at that two week end of the spectrum. The real point about this is that it is very much a self-assessment on the patient’s part.

So, if you’ve had a caesar and you want to drive you need to consider things like:

  • Can you get in and out of the car easily?
  • Can you put your seatbelt on comfortably?
  • Can you move around the vehicle cabin as required?
  • Can you work the controls?
  • Can you slam your foot on the brake to stop suddenly?

If you can do those things, then you’re probably fine to drive.

The other thing you should be aware of are, if you’ve got excessive pain, if you’re taking medications that sedate you or affect your judgement, then you obviously shouldn’t drive.

The other great misconception about driving after a caesar is that you can’t do so until you’ve been given a formal medical clearance. Formal medical clearances to drive are not even really a thing. They’re not a thing, unless you’ve been told specifically by your insurer that you need one. I can literally count on one hand the number of times that I’ve seen that in my career.

If you have been told by your insurer that you need a clearance, then that is something you need to get physically from the doctor in their presence. You can’t get that remotely – you need to be assessed by them.

In summary, if you want to drive after a caesar it’s very much a self-assessment. If you’re not sure or you want more information, do go and see your doctor.

Dr Brad Robinson OBGYN
Greenslopes Private Hospital


Driving after caesarean birth blog by Dr Brad Robinson, Brisbane Obstetrician Gynaecologist

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