Clinical opinion published on use of maternal oxygen during labor

February 20, 2014, Women & Infants Hospital

When a fetal heartbeat pattern becomes irregular during labor, many practitioners give oxygen to the mother. But questions remain whether this oxygen supplementation benefits the fetus or may actually be potentially harmful.

A clinical opinion written by third year resident Maureen Hamel, MD, along with maternal-fetal medicine specialists Brenna Anderson, MD and Dwight Rouse, MD, of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Women & Infants Hospital of Rhode Island and The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University, has been published in the January 10, 2014 online edition of the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

The manuscript, entitled "Oxygen for intrauterine resuscitation: Of unproved benefit and potentially harmful," aimed to make recommendations about the safety of the use of maternal oxygen supplementation in laboring women.

According to lead author Dr. Hamel, "Maternal oxygen is often given to laboring women to improve fetal metabolic status or in an attempt to alleviate non-reassuring fetal heart rate patterns. However, there are only two randomized trials investigating the use of maternal oxygen supplementation in laboring women. These studies did not find that supplementation is likely to benefit the and may even be harmful."

Based on their research, the team concludes that until it is studied properly in a randomized clinical trial, maternal oxygen supplementation in labor should be reserved for maternal hypoxia (lack of oxygen) and should not be considered an indicated intervention for non-reassuring fetal status.

Explore further: Maternal-fetal medicine professionals identify ways to reduce first cesarean

Related Stories

Maternal-fetal medicine professionals identify ways to reduce first cesarean

January 24, 2014
A recently published article, based on a workshop, Preventing the First Cesarean Delivery: Summary of a Joint Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine, ...

Study finds elevated levels of cell-free DNA in first trimester do not predict preeclampsia

February 11, 2012
In a study to be presented today at the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine's annual meeting, The Pregnancy Meeting, in Dallas, Texas, researchers will report findings that indicate that elevated levels of cell-free DNA in ...

Immune system drives pregnancy complications after fetal surgery in mice

January 27, 2014
(Medical Xpress)—As a fetal surgeon at UC San Francisco, Tippi MacKenzie, MD, has long known that conducting surgery on a fetus to correct a problems such as spina bifida often results in preterm labor and premature birth.

Prenatal diagnosis of congenital heart disease increases maternal stress, depression, and anxiety

September 7, 2012
Heart defects are the most common form of congenital malformations affecting newborns. Infants who were prenatally diagnosed with congenital heart disease (CHD) are more stable and have better outcomes than infants who were ...

Clinical trial strives to provide optimal care during high-risk pregnancies

September 23, 2013
Researchers are conducting a clinical trial to help determine the best timing of delivery in preterm pregnancies complicated by poor fetal growth. Preliminary results from the trial, which are published early online in Ultrasound ...

Popular fetal monitoring method leads to more c-sections

February 15, 2012
Pregnant women in labor, upon arriving at the hospital, will often have their baby’s heart rate monitored to assess the baby’s wellbeing. A new research review suggests that the use of one popular method of monitoring ...

Recommended for you

Rise in preterm births linked to clinical intervention

January 18, 2018
Research at the University of Adelaide shows preterm births in South Australia have increased by 40 percent over 28 years and early intervention by medical professionals has resulted in the majority of the increase.

New report calls into question effectiveness of pregnancy anti-nausea drug

January 17, 2018
Previously unpublished information from the clinical trial that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration relied on to approve the most commonly prescribed medicine for nausea in pregnancy indicates the drug is not effective, ...

New study finds 'baby brain' is real, but the cause remains mysterious

January 15, 2018
So-called "baby brain" refers to increased forgetfulness, inattention, and mental "fogginess" reported by four out of five pregnant women. These changes in brain function during pregnancy have long been recognised in midwifery ...

Sleep quality improves with help of incontinence drug

January 12, 2018
A drug used to curtail episodes of urinary incontinence in women also improves quality of sleep, a researcher at the Stanford University School of Medicine reports.

Frozen embryos result in just as many live births in IVF

January 10, 2018
Freezing and subsequent transfer of embryos gives infertile couples just as much of a chance of having a child as using fresh embryos for in vitro fertilization (IVF), research from Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, and Adelaide, ...

Study suggests air pollution breathed in the months before and after conception increases chance of birth defects

January 8, 2018
A team of researchers with the University of Cincinnati and Cincinnati Children's Hospital has found evidence that indicates that pre-and post-pregnant women living in an area with air pollution are at an increased risk of ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.