UpToDate
Official reprint from UpToDate®
www.uptodate.com ©2017 UpToDate, Inc. and/or its affiliates. All Rights Reserved.

Precipitous birth not occurring on a labor and delivery unit

Author
Vanessa A Barss, MD, FACOG
Section Editors
Vincenzo Berghella, MD
Robert S Hockberger, MD, FACEP
Deputy Editor
Kristen Eckler, MD, FACOG

INTRODUCTION

The terms precipitate or precipitous labor have been defined as a labor that lasts no more than three hours from onset of regular contractions to delivery [1]. Each year, hundreds of deliveries in the United States occur precipitously in emergency departments and medical and surgical hospital rooms, as well as outside of the hospital setting in homes and cars. In most of these cases, labor and delivery results in good outcomes in the absence of physician/midwife intervention or a traditional delivery site.

This topic will review the key points for assisting women during an imminent delivery of a fetus in cephalic presentation either in or outside of a medical facility. It is intended for healthcare providers who do not perform obstetrical deliveries as part of their usual practice. Related topics on labor and delivery are presented in detail elsewhere.

(See "Management of normal labor and delivery".)

(See "Normal and abnormal labor progression".)

IMAGES

The birth process is illustrated in the diagrams (figure 1 and figure 2) and photographs (picture 1A-F).

            
To continue reading this article, you must log in with your personal, hospital, or group practice subscription. For more information on subscription options, click below on the option that best describes you:

Subscribers log in here

Literature review current through: Sep 2017. | This topic last updated: Oct 03, 2017.
The content on the UpToDate website is not intended nor recommended as a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your own physician or other qualified health care professional regarding any medical questions or conditions. The use of this website is governed by the UpToDate Terms of Use ©2017 UpToDate, Inc.
References
Top
  1. Hughes EC. Obstetric-Gynecologic Terminology, Davis, Philadelphia 1972. p.390.