Duchess Of Cambridge's Doctor Talks About Prince George's Birth

Sir Marcus Setchell, the gynaecologist who assisted the Duchess of Cambridge throughout her pregnancy, has spoken about how he handled the pressure of delivering Prince George last July.

"You just keep reminding yourself that although it's very important, for the couple and the about-to-be-born baby, it's just another healthy young couple giving birth to a hopefully very healthy baby," said Sir Setchell.

"And I constantly reminded myself of that so that the pressures of the hundreds of media people outside the hospital didn't affect me, at least not more than minimally."

Speaking on BBC Radio 4's Woman's Hour yesterday (July 16), he also hinted that George's birth may not have been completely straight forward. Asked if his presence was really necessary, or if a midwife could have handled the delivery without his assistance, he responded:

"Well that's a good question, that I can't really answer, because what happened in labour is an entirely private matter.

"But I do think that there are certain situations when someone is giving birth that it is important not just to have a specialist available on the end of a telephone, but actually in the same room to deal with anything that's immediately going to be wrong."

Sir Marcus Setchell received a knighthood for his services to the Royal family, in March.

He was assisted at the birth of Prince George by a team of doctors and midwives. He added that the midwives involved in the birth were 'wonderful' and they 'contributed hugely'.

He worked as surgeon-gynaecologist to the Royal household of Queen Elizabeth II for 24 years. He delayed his retirement when the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge asked him to supervise the birth of the third-in-line to the throne.

Over that time he has seen the experience of birth change greatly:

"When I first started it was very much that doctors - and to some extent midwives - told the patient what would happen, and people were not really given information to make choices," he said.

But he feels that things have greatly improved, now that parents are more informed about what they want for their birth.

"It's made it much more exciting and interesting to have women as partners in the relationship, rather than a doctor patient relationship which had hierarchies."