Birth Summary

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The story is an extract from eminent writer A.J.Cronin’s novel ‘The Citadel'. The story of birth summary class 11, is about a doctor who has to deal with a difficult case while his mental state is not good. He finally overcomes the problem and gives his excellent patient care. The extracted part tells about a medical miracle that a doctor’s goodwill and hard work to treat his patient. The story ‘The Citadel’ is a conglomeration of tragedy, loss and redemption.

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Summary of the Story

Andrew Manson is a doctor and recently passed out of medical school in the Birth chapter summary. He has a girlfriend named Christine, who is a schoolteacher. As he just passed out, he is still new to the job. Andrew argued with his girlfriend as he is very outspoken. As Andrew was feeling guilty about the argument, he reached his home finally. As soon as he arrived at his house, he found that Joe Morgan was eagerly waiting for him there. Joe's wife was expecting the first child. Both of them are very nervous and anxious as this is going to be their first child in the 20 long years of their marriage. Though it is late in the night, Andrew agrees to go with Mr Morgan as he puts his duty ahead of his well-being.


When both of them reached Mr Morgan's house, Andrew saw that a midwife, who is a trained professional help during labour, is attending Lady Morgan. Just by looking at her, Andrew assessed that the condition of the lady is severe, and she is in labour pain. Despite the very assessment, he took a pause and utilised the time to have a better understanding of the condition. 


Though he only wants to think about his patient at that moment, his mind diverts into other things like how Branwell did everything for a woman who at the end, betrayed him. He also thought about Edward Page who now lives separately away from his first wife and has married the ill-natured Bowden. He felt that all these could again happen with him and Christine. But he puts all these aside as he has to get back to his patient who needs medical attention. Lady Morgan was under anaesthesia.


Andrew gave his all, and after an hour-long struggle, at the stroke of dawn, the lady delivered a child. Soon after the delivery, Andrew noticed that the child has no life as it is a stillborn baby. Andrew was ultimately in shock at that time as he saw that the child is lifeless, and also, the mother requires immediate medical treatment. At that moment Andrew had to make a choice. He had to choose who he would want to attend, the child or the mother.


He chooses the mother over the child. Andrew handed the child to the midwife. Lady Morgan was unconscious at that time. Andrew calmed himself down and treated the mother with steady hands, and slowly Lady Morgan gained consciousness, and her heartbeat returned to a standard rate. He then inquired about the child from the Midwife. The midwife told Andrew that she had put the child under the bed wrapped in soaked newspaper. Andrew pulled the child out and scrutinised it, who is looking pale and looked like he has suffered suffocation.


In the beginning, Andrew failed to recognise that it is a case of asphyxia, and the child had suffered from an excess amount of carbon dioxide and less oxygen in the blood. At that very moment, Andrew can give up on the child, but he didn’t. He didn’t lose hope and started giving all the medical treatment to the child and tried to recollect everything he has learned in the medical school. While he was trying, the midwife kept telling him that he can’t put life back into a dead child, and the child was stillborn. But Andrew ignored all that and kept on trying as he knew that the child is essential to the couple.


When Andrew almost gave up, he suddenly remembered a case in the medical school which was very similar to this one. He found a ray of hope amidst the darkness. He started rubbing the child's back with a crushed towel. He puts the chest of the little child on both his hands. He then tries to fill some air into the body of the child, and after almost half an hour's hard-fought battle, the little body gave a motion, and the child slowly turned around and started crying. Andrew heaved a sigh of relief and handed the child over to the midwife. After he is dining, he narrates the whole thing to Mr Morgan and takes his permission to leave and walks down the street. When he walked, he had a sense of satisfaction and had the feeling of achieving something great.

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

Question 1: What is the Theme of the Chapter 'Birth Summary'?

Answer: The theme of the story revolves around the efforts being put in by medical practitioners in treating their patients. Andrew, the protagonist, is dealing with a critical medical birth case. Unfortunately, the baby born is lifeless. However, Andrew does not let go and makes his best of efforts in saving the patient. He not only succeeded in reviving the baby but also ended up saving the mother. 

Question 2: What Steps Did Andrew Take to Restore the Lifeless Child?

Answer: It was Andrew's major achievement when he was able to revive the stillborn baby. The medical case was a difficult one, but Andrew was able to get a positive outcome for the case. He initially lays the baby on the blanket, and then he begins the process of respiration. He then moves on to giving hot as well as cold water treatment to the baby. Further, he presses and releases the baby's chest with his hands.