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Midwifery. 2003 Sep;19(3):221-9.

A randomised controlled trial of admission electronic fetal monitoring in normal labour.

Author information

1
Nursing Research Initiative for Scotland, Nursing and Midwifery Building, University of Stirling, UK. h.l.cheyne@stir.ac.uk

Abstract

AIM:

To test the hypothesis that the use of admission Electronic Fetal Monitoring (EFM) for healthy pregnant women in spontaneous labour would result in an increase in continuous EFM when compared to women who have had no admission EFM.

DESIGN:

A randomised controlled trial.

SETTING:

The Midwives Birth Unit in Glasgow Royal Maternity Hospital, a major urban teaching hospital with approximately 5000 births per year.

PARTICIPANTS:

Healthy pregnant women admitted in normal labour, deemed low risk based on the midwives' birth unit admission criteria.

INTERVENTION:

Women were randomly allocated either to receive a routine 20-minute period of EFM at the time of admission (control group), or to receive no routine admission EFM (study group).

OUTCOME MEASURES:

Primary study outcomes, use of continuous EFM; and use of EFM additional to the admission test.

SECONDARY OUTCOMES:

artificial rupture of membranes, use of fetal scalp electrode, fetal blood sample, syntocinon, epidural analgesia, number of vaginal examinations, rate of transfer to labour ward, and reason for transfer.

KEY FINDINGS:

There was no statistically significant difference between the groups for use of continuous monitoring, but significantly more women in the control group did receive additional EFM. There was no statistically significant difference between groups for any of the interventions studied.

CONCLUSION:

The use of admission EFM did not in itself lead to a cascade of intervention. Other factors including setting of care and philosophy of caregivers may have an effect on the rate of intervention in labour.

PMID:
12946338
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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