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Comparing electronic monitoring of the baby's heartbeat on a woman's admission in labour using cardiotocography (CTG) with intermittent monitoring

Monitoring of the FHR is one of the most common methods for checking a baby's wellbeing. The two most common ways of monitoring the FHR are by listening to the heart beat using a fetal stethoscope, Pinard (special trumpet shaped device), hand‐held Doppler ultrasound device (known as intermittent auscultation) or by an electronic fetal monitoring (EFM) machine that produces a printout of the baby’s heart rate and the mother’s contractions, called a CTG.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2017

Continuous cardiotocography (CTG) as a form of electronic fetal monitoring (EFM) for fetal assessment during labour

Monitoring babies' heartbeats is used to check wellbeing during labour. Listening and recording the baby's heartbeat aims to identify babies who are becoming short of oxygen and may benefit from an early delivery by caesarean section or instrumental vaginal birth.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2017

Monitoring a baby's heart rate during labour with and without a computerised decision aid: a comparison of pregnancy outcomes

When a woman goes into labour, maternity care providers may choose to monitor the baby's heart rate during the birth to ensure the baby is healthy. An abnormal heart rate is a strong indicator that the baby is stressed, for example because the baby has insufficient oxygen. If there is a problem with the baby's heart rate, care providers may wish to perform additional tests or speed up delivery to avoid major complications. A cardiotocography (CTG) machine is frequently used to monitor the heart rate, which is measured in relation to the woman's contractions during labour. The machine prints the results on a strip known as a CTG trace or they are viewed directly on a visual display unit. In some cases, however, it is difficult for maternity care providers to determine whether the CTG trace is normal or abnormal, and this can result in unnecessary intervention or a delay in providing necessary interventions. Computerised decision aids, also referred to as expert systems (ESs), have a computerised knowledge base that can be matched and may be able to guide CTG interpretation to avoid such situations.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2015

What is the most effective way to listen intermittently to the baby’s heart in labour to improve the baby’s well‐being?

One method of monitoring a baby's well‐being is to listen to the fetal heart rate and its pattern intermittently during labour (intermittent auscultation). There are several ways that the baby's heart rate can be measured. Some tools for listening to the baby's heart are made from wood, plastic or aluminium (Pinard, Laennec and fetoscope), and there are also electronic tools of varying sophistication, including hand‐held (battery or wind‐up operated) Doppler ultrasound (Doppler) and cardiotocogram (CTG), which is sometimes referred to as electronic fetal monitoring (EFM).

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2017

Interventions for treating osteoarthritis in the temporomandibular joint

The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) or jaw joint is located in front of the ear on either side of the face. However, it is the only joint that the dentists and maxillofacial surgeons predominantly have to deal with. As with many of the other joints, the TMJ can be affected by osteoarthritis (OA). This is characterized by progressive destruction of the internal surfaces of the joint which can result in debilitating pain and joint noises. Several disorders other than OA may affect the TMJ and the correct diagnosis is important such that it can be matched with appropriate therapy.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2012

Fetal pulse oximetry for fetal assessment in labour

Using fetal pulse oximetry to assess the baby's well‐being during labour does not change overall caesarean section rates.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2014

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