SciCombinator

Discover the most talked about and latest scientific content & concepts.

Concept: Midwifery

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BACKGROUND: The aim of this study is to compare the odds of postpartum haemorrhage among women who opt for home birth against the odds of postpartum haemorrhage for those who plan a hospital birth. It is an observational study involving secondary analysis of maternity records, using binary logistic regression modelling. The data relate to pregnancies that received maternity care from one of fifteen hospitals in the former North West Thames Regional Health Authority Area in England, and which resulted in a live or stillbirth in the years 1988–2000 inclusive, excluding ‘high-risk’ pregnancies, unplanned home births, pre-term births, elective Caesareans and medical inductions. RESULTS: Even after adjustment for known confounders such as parity, the odds of postpartum haemorrhage (>=1000ml of blood lost) are significantly higher if a hospital birth is intended than if a home birth is intended (odds ratio 2.5, 95% confidence interval 1.7 to 3.8). The ‘home birth’ group included women who were transferred to hospital during labour or shortly after birth. CONCLUSIONS: Women and their partners should be advised that the risk of PPH is higher among births planned to take place in hospital compared to births planned to take place at home, but that further research is needed to understand (a) whether the same pattern applies to the more life-threatening categories of PPH, and (b) why hospital birth is associated with increased odds of PPH. If it is due to the way in which labour is managed in hospital, changes should be made to practices which compromise the safety of labouring women.

Concepts: Regression analysis, Logit, Logistic regression, Pregnancy, Childbirth, Obstetrics, Midwifery, Home birth

196

This interactive feature offers a case vignette accompanied by essays that support either delivery at home or delivery in a hospital or hospital-affiliated birthing center. Share your comments and vote at NEJM.org.

Concepts: Childbirth, Midwifery, Birth, Baby Birth

176

BACKGROUND: Skilled attendants during labor, delivery, and in the early postpartum period, can prevent up to 75% or more of maternal death. However, in many developing countries, very few mothers make at least one antenatal visit and even less receive delivery care from skilled professionals. The present study reports findings from a region where key challenges related to transportation and availability of obstetric services were addressed by an ongoing project, giving a unique opportunity to understand why women might continue to prefer home delivery even when facility based delivery is available at minimal cost. METHODS: The study took place in Ethiopia using a mixed study design employing a cross sectional household survey among 15–49 year old women combined with in-depth interviews and focus group discussions. RESULTS: Seventy one percent of mothers received antenatal care from a health professional (doctor, health officer, nurse, or midwife) for their most recent birth in the one year preceding the survey. Overall only 16% of deliveries were assisted by health professionals, while a significant majority (78%) was attended by traditional birth attendants. The most important reasons for not seeking institutional delivery were the belief that it is not necessary (42%) and not customary (36%), followed by high cost (22%) and distance or lack of transportation (8%). The group discussions and interviews identified several reasons for the preference of traditional birth attendants over health facilities. Traditional birth attendants were seen as culturally acceptable and competent health workers. Women reported poor quality of care and previous negative experiences with health facilities. In addition, women’s low awareness on the advantages of skilled attendance at delivery, little role in making decisions (even when they want), and economic constraints during referral contribute to the low level of service utilization. CONCLUSIONS: The study indicated the crucial role of proper health care provider-client communication and providing a more client centered and culturally sensitive care if utilization of existing health facilities is to be maximized. Implications of findings for maternal health programs and further research are discussed.

Concepts: Health care, Health care provider, Medicine, Healthcare, Childbirth, Obstetrics, Midwifery, Home birth

168

BACKGROUND: Current recommendations do not support the use of continuous electronic fetal monitoring (EFM) for low risk women during labour, yet EFM remains widespread in clinical practice. Consideration of the views, perspectives and experiences of individuals directly concerned with EFM application may be beneficial for identifying barriers to and facilitators for implementing evidence-based maternity care. The aim of this paper is to offer insight and understanding, through systematic review and thematic analysis, of research into professionals' views on fetal heart rate monitoring during labour. METHODS: Any study whose aim was to explore professional views of fetal monitoring during labour was considered eligible for inclusion. The electronic databases of MEDLINE (1966–2010), CINAHL (1980–2010), EMBASE (1974–2010) and Maternity and Infant Care: MIDIRS (1971–2010) were searched in January 2010 and an updated search was performed in March 2012. Quality appraisal of each included study was performed. Data extraction tables were developed to collect data. Data synthesis was by thematic analysis. RESULTS: Eleven studies, including 1,194 participants, were identified and included in this review. Four themes emerged from the data: 1) reassurance, 2) technology, 3) communication/education and 4) midwife by proxy. CONCLUSION: This systematic review and thematic analysis offers insight into some of the views of professionals on fetal monitoring during labour. It provides evidence for the continuing use of EFM when caring for low-risk women, contrary to current research evidence. Further research to ascertain how some of these views might be addressed to ensure the provision of evidence-based care for women and their babies is recommended.

Concepts: Pregnancy, Childbirth, Infant, Evidence-based medicine, Systematic review, Obstetrics, Midwifery, Fetal distress

38

For women at low risk of childbirth complications, water immersion during labour is a care option in many high income countries. Our aims were (a) to describe maternal characteristics, intrapartum events, interventions, maternal and neonatal outcomes for all women who used a birthing pool during labour who either had a waterbirth or left the pool and had a landbirth, and for the subgroup of women who had a waterbirth in 19 obstetric units, and (b) to compare maternal characteristics, intrapartum events, interventions, and maternal and neonatal outcomes for women who used a birthing pool with a control group of women who did not use a birthing pool for whom we prospectively collected data in a single centre.

Concepts: Scientific method, Pregnancy, Childbirth, Infant, Obstetrics, Midwifery, Water birth, Pre- and perinatal psychology

33

Current clinical guidelines and national policy in England support offering ‘low risk’ women a choice of birth setting. Options include: home, free-standing midwifery unit (FMU), alongside midwifery unit (AMU) or obstetric unit (OU). This study, which is part of a broader project designed to inform policy on ‘choice’ in relation to childbirth, aimed to provide evidence on UK women’s experiences of choice and decision-making in the period since the publication of the Birthplace findings (2011) and new NICE guidelines (2014). This paper reports on findings relating to women’s information needs when making decisions about where to give birth.

Concepts: Pregnancy, Childbirth, Decision making, Focus group, Obstetrics, Decision theory, Qualitative research, Midwifery

30

In many countries midwives act as the main providers of care for women throughout pregnancy, labour and birth. In our large public teaching hospital in Australia we restructured the way midwifery care is offered and introduced caseload midwifery for one third of women booked at the hospital. We then compared the costs and birth outcomes associated with caseload midwifery compared to the two existing models of care, standard hospital care and private obstetric care.

Concepts: Pregnancy, Childbirth, Hospital, Obstetrics, Traditional birth attendant, Midwifery, Home birth, Childbirth and obstetrics in antiquity

29

Midwifery practice is emotional and, at times, traumatic work. Cumulative exposure to this, in an unsupportive environment can result in the development of psychological and behavioural symptoms of distress.

Concepts: Psychology, Behavioural sciences, Midwifery

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to explore how midwifery students and newly qualified midwives learnt to make clinical decisions.

Concepts: Decision making, Explorer, Midwifery

28

: Shoulder dystocia is one of the most terrifying of obstetric emergencies. In this secondary analysis of two qualitative studies, the experiences of shoulder dystocia are compared and contrasted from two perspectives: the mothers and the labor and delivery nurses.

Concepts: Pregnancy, Childbirth, Obstetrics, Caesarean section, Breech birth, Midwifery, Shoulder dystocia