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Midwifery. 2015 Apr;31(4):458-63. doi: 10.1016/j.midw.2014.12.012. Epub 2015 Jan 8.

Use of pharmacological and non-pharmacological labour pain management techniques and their relationship to maternal and infant birth outcomes: examination of a nationally representative sample of 1835 pregnant women.

Author information

1
Faculty of Health, University of Technology Sydney, Level 7, Building 10, 235-253 Jones Street, Ultimo, NSW 2006, Australia. Electronic address: Jon.adams@uts.edu.au.
2
Faculty of Health, University of Technology Sydney, Level 7, Building 10, 235-253 Jones Street, Ultimo, NSW 2006, Australia. Electronic address: Jane.frawley@uts.edu.au.
3
Faculty of Health, University of Technology Sydney, Level 7, Building 10, 235-253 Jones Street, Ultimo, NSW 2006, Australia; Endeavour College of Natural Health, level 2, 269 Wickham St, Fortitude Valley, Brisbane, QLD 4006, Australia. Electronic address: Amie.steel@uts.edu.au.
4
School of Social Science, Level 3, Michie Building, St Lucia Campus, University of Queensland, St Lucia, QLD 4072, Australia. Electronic address: a.broom@uq.edu.au.
5
David Sibbritt Faculty of Health, UTS, Level 7, Building 10, 235-253 Jones Street, Ultimo, NSW 2006, Australia. Electronic address: david.sibbritt@uts.edu.au.

Abstract

AIM:

women use various labour pain management techniques during birth. The objective of this study is to investigate women׳s use of pharmacological and non-pharmacological labour pain management techniques in relation to birth outcomes.

METHODS:

a sub-survey of a nationally representative sample of pregnant women (n=1835) from the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women׳s Health.

RESULTS:

our analysis identified women׳s use of water for labour pain management as decreasing the likelihood of their baby being admitted to special care nursery (OR=0.42, p<0.004) whereas the use of epidural increased this likelihood (OR=3.38, p<0.001) as well as for instrumental childbirth (OR=7.27, p<0.001). Epidural and pethidine use decreased women׳s likelihood of continuing breast-feeding (ORs=0.68 and 0.59, respectively, both p<0.01) whereas the use of breathing techniques and massage for pain control increased the likelihood of women continuing breast-feeding (ORs=1.72 and 1.62, respectively, both p<0.01).

CONCLUSIONS:

our study illustrates associations between the use of both pharmacological and non-pharmacological labour pain management techniques and selected birth outcomes while controlling for confounding variables. There remain significant gaps in the evidence base for the use of non-pharmacological labour pain control methods and our findings provide a platform with which to develop a broad clinical research programme around this topic.

KEYWORDS:

Childbirth; Infant health; Labour pain; Pain management; Pregnancy outcome

PMID:
25649472
DOI:
10.1016/j.midw.2014.12.012
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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