Lifestyle Viral and Trending 08 Apr 2016 Caesarean babies not ...

Caesarean babies not prone to become criminals

Published Apr 8, 2016, 1:31 am IST
Updated Apr 8, 2016, 1:31 am IST
Despite clarification, former DGP Alexander Jacob’s statement has not gone down well with the medical fraternity.
Picture used for representative purpose. 	—VIA WEB
 Picture used for representative purpose. —VIA WEB

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Taking part in a recent TV health show, former Jail DGP Alexander Jacob referred to studies carried out in US and France to suggest that babies born by Caesarean section (C-section) were more prone to become criminals. His statement evoked sharp reaction from the medical fraternity which felt such utterances could create a scare in the society especially in a state like Kerala which has a high rate of C-section deliveries. “I just referred to studies in the US and France which indicated that 80 per cent of the accused involved in shoot-outs in schools, colleges and public places were born by C section. In that same TV programme, I categorically stated that these were statistical findings hence had no medical basis,” Jacob told DC.

The former DGP said he had planned a similar study in the jails of Kerala to trace the background of convicts and under trails. But before the process could start, he was transferred out. What has also angered the medical community is DGP’s another statement which goes like this; “Of the 9 rippers, eight have been identified. Of these, seven rippers were born using forceps with injuries in the head. They have a tendency of hitting on the head of others.”


Despite clarification, the former DGP’s statement has not gone down well with the medical fraternity.  But Jacob said the opposition was coming mainly from those doctors who encourage patients to undergo C-section deliveries. “I am told C section is quite rampant in private hospitals for obvious reasons,” he said.
Leading child psychiatrist Dr R Jayprakash who has done his Ph.D in child psychiatry, rubbished Jacob’s statement.

“There is no relation between child criminal behaviour and C-section. The factors responsible for such criminal tendencies could be due to the changes occurring in the brain and the circumstances in which the child grows up,” he said. Problems like single parenting, alcoholism, domestic violence, troublesome childhood, friendship with people in older in age, influence of peer groups also contribute to child conduct disorder.


Tendencies like stealing, lying, aggressive behaviour, destructive behaviour, abusive nature all add up in making a criminal mind. “You have men and women prototypes in society who are emulated by children,” he said while referring to the glorification of criminals in media.

Many of the youngsters might end up as psychopaths or reactive criminals. But correctional measures are also quite effective in changing their mindset gradually, he added. Dr Saravanan of SAT hospital said C section surgeries had increased because of the availability of modern medical facilities for early detection of medical complications. “If C section is carried out at the right time it could avoid serious complications like intrauterine growth retardation (IUGR) - poor growth of foetus while in the mother's womb during pregnancy,” .


C-section also helps in avoiding many medical complications among the babies including birth asphyxia. During C section procedure, mother is put on oxygen which in turn ensures supply of oxygen to the baby as well helping in brain development. “I have never come across any instance of C-section babies becoming criminals. There is no medical evidence to suggest this trend. Most of the C section surgeries are advised because of medical complications," said Dr Lekshmi, a senior gynaecologist with Sree Gokulam Medical College here.

Amidst the raging debate, Jacob cited Julius Caesar to suggest that his argument could well be correct. “It is said that Julius Caesar was born by caesarean section as his name suggests. We don't know whether medical facilities were advanced at that time for C-section. But the fact is that Julius Caesar was the most violent person in Roman history.”


C-section deliveries on the higher side

About three years ago the state had witnessed a major controversy following alarming increase in the number of C-section operations in some of the government hospitals.  Many reasons have been attributed to the increase in number of caesarean section surgeries; doctors carry out more than the permissible number of C section surgeries for taking holidays, couples insist on caesarean surgeries to ensure the birth of their babies in an auspicious time, private hospitals encourage caesarean to normal delivery with an eye on the income, early detection of medical complications and painless delivery.


Experts say about a decade ago caesarean section surgeries were limited to nearly 9 per cent of all deliveries in the country which was below the recommended 10 to 15 per cent recommended by WHO. According to them, at the moment 35-40 per cent deliveries taking place in the state were through caesarean section. Neighbouring Tamil Nadu has also registered significantly high caesarean section deliveries touching almost 58 per cent.

Perturbed by the increasing number of  unethical C-section deliveries, a couple of years ago the state government had come out with a set of guidelines for both public and private health institutions. A patient scheduled for delivery should be examined by at least two doctors before she is cleared for surgery. Besides, all c section surgeries in the government and private hospitals should be subjected to internal audit.