Characteristics of episiotomy incision influence injury risk

Characteristics of episiotomy incision influence injury risk
Narrow-angled episiotomies increase the risk of obstetric anal sphincter injuries (OASIS), while other factors, including point of incision and episiotomy length and depth, reduce the risk of OASIS, according to a study published online March 6 in BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics & Gynaecology.

(HealthDay) -- Narrow-angled episiotomies increase the risk of obstetric anal sphincter injuries (OASIS), while other factors, including point of incision and episiotomy length and depth, reduce the risk of OASIS, according to a study published online March 6 in BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics & Gynaecology.

Mona Stedenfeldt, of the University Hospital of North Norway in Tromsø, and colleagues conducted a case-control study of 74 women with a history of a single vaginal birth and an episiotomy. The researchers identified, photographed, and measured the episiotomy scar in 37 women with OASIS and 37 controls.

The researchers found that, for each 5.5-mm increase in episiotomy depth there was a 70 percent decrease in the risk of sustaining OASIS (odds ratio [OR], 0.30); for each 4.5-mm increase in the distance from the midline to the incision point of the episiotomy there was a 56 percent decreased risk (OR, 0.44); and for each 5.5-mm increase in episiotomy length there was a 75 percent decrease in the risk of sustaining OASIS (OR, 0.25). The mean angle did not differ between the groups, but a "U-shaped" association was seen between angle and OASIS (OR, 2.09), with an angle either smaller than 15 degrees or greater than 60 degrees associated with an increased risk (OR, 9.00).

"The present study showed that scarred episiotomies with depth >16 mm, length >17 mm, point >9 mm lateral of midpoint and angle range 30 to 60 degrees are significantly associated with less risk of OASIS," the authors write.

More information: Abstract
Full Text (subscription or payment may be required)

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Black patients at higher risk for colon polyps

Sep 23, 2008

Compared with white patients, black patients undergoing screening colonoscopy have a higher prevalence of colon polyps, according to a study in the September 24 issue of JAMA.

Cancer risk up in bilateral retinoblastoma survivors

Feb 23, 2012

(HealthDay) -- For survivors of bilateral retinoblastoma (Rb), family history is associated with an increased risk of second cancers (SCs), especially melanoma, according to a study published online Feb. 21 ...

Recommended for you

Eating disorders linked to adverse perinatal outcomes

15 hours ago

(HealthDay)—Maternal eating disorders are associated with adverse pregnancy, obstetric, and perinatal health outcomes, according to a study published in the October issue of the American Journal of Obstetrics & ...

Large variation in cesarean rates across US hospitals

Oct 21, 2014

Cesarean delivery is the most common inpatient surgery in the United States. US cesarean rates increased from 20.7% in 1996 to 32.9% in 2009 but have since stabilized, with 1.3 million American women having had a cesarean ...

User comments