Abstract Title:

Effects of water birth on maternal and neonatal outcomes.

Abstract Source:

Wien Klin Wochenschr. 2002 Jun 14;114(10-11):391-5. PMID: 12708093

Abstract Author(s):

Klaus Bodner, Barbara Bodner-Adler, Franz Wierrani, Klaus Mayerhofer, Christian Fousek, Anton Niedermayr, Werner Grünberger

Article Affiliation:

Departments of Gynaecology and Obstetrics, Hospital Rudolfstiftung, Vienna, Austria. Klausbodner@yahoo.com


BACKGROUND: Our purpose was to assess benefits and possible disadvantages of water births and to compare maternal and neonatal outcomes with normal vaginal deliveries. METHODS: This case-controlled study was carried out between January 2000 and July 2001. A total of 140 women who wanted water births were enrolled into the study. Our analysis was restricted to a sample of women with a gestational age>37 weeks, a normal sized foetus, a reactive admission cardiotocography, drainage of clear amniotic fluid (if the membranes were already ruptured) and a pregnancy with cephalic presentation. Women with medical or obstetric risk factors were excluded. 140 controls were selected from the delivery database as the next parity-matched normal spontaneous vaginal delivery. RESULTS: A statistically significant lower rate of episiotomies (p = 0.0001) and vaginal trauma (p = 0.03) was detected in the group assigned to water birth, whereas the frequency of perineal tears and labial trauma remained similar in both groups (p>0.05). A statistically significant decrease in the use of medical analgesia (p = 0.0001) and oxytocin (p = 0.002) was observed in women who had water births. A trend towards a reduction of the length of the first stage of labour was only observed in primiparous women bearing in water, but this reduction did not reach statistically significance (p>0.05). Manual placenta removal (p = 0.017), severe postpartum haemorrhage (blood loss>500 ml; p = 0.002) and maternal infection rate (p = 0.03) were statistically significant lower in women who delivered in water. When analysing the postpartum haemoglobin, no statistically significant differences could be observed between the two groups (p>0.05). No statistically significant differences were detected for neonatal parameters (p>0.05) between women who had had water births and those choosing conventional vaginal delivery.

Study Type : Human Study
Additional Links
Therapeutic Actions : Water Birth : CK(30) : AC(3)

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