Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

No increase in C-sections when epidural analgesia given early in labor

17.02.2005


Injecting spinal-epidural analgesia in early labor does not increase cesarean delivery rates and provides better pain relief and a shorter duration of labor than systemic opioid analgesia, according to an article by Northwestern University researchers published in the Feb. 17 issue of The New England Journal of Medicine.
Epidural injections are administered into the space between the wall of the spinal canal and the sheath covering the spinal cord and anesthetize the abdominal, genital and pelvic areas. Spinal injections are administered into the fluid surrounding the spinal cord.

Previous research has suggested that epidural analgesia initiated early in labor – when the cervix is dilated less than 4 centimeters – is associated with an increased risk for cesarean delivery. Based on that research, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommended that epidural analgesia be delayed in women who have not previously given birth until their cervix dilates to 4 to 5 centimeters and that other forms of analgesia, for example, systemic opioid analgesia, be used until that time.


However, it is unclear whether increased risk for cesarean delivery is due to neuraxial [spinal or epidural] analgesia or can be explained by other factors, said Cynthia A. Wong, M.D., associate professor of anesthesiology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, who led the study. Wong also is an anesthesiologist at Northwestern Memorial Hospital. "Systemic opioid analgesia is often incomplete and has potential maternal and fetal side effects, including neonatal and maternal respiratory depression, especially when spinal or epidural opioids are administered concomitantly," Wong said.

The Northwestern study examined 750 full-term, nulliparous (no previous births) women in spontaneous labor, with cervical dilation less than 4 centimeters. Participants were randomized to receive spinal fentanyl or systemic hydromorphone (a morphine-like drug) at their first request for anesthesia. Epidural analgesia was administered in the spinal group at their second request for analgesia, and in the systemic group, when the cervix had dilated to 4 centimeters or greater, or at the third request for analgesia. Rate of cesarean delivery was the primary outcome. Wong and colleagues found that the rate of cesarean delivery was not significantly different between the groups – 18 percent in the spinal group versus 21 percent in the systemic group.

Moreover, the median time from initiation of analgesia to complete dilation was 295 minutes in the epidural group versus 385 minutes in the systemic group; vaginal delivery was significantly shorter (398 minutes versus 479 minutes) and self-reported pain scores were significantly lower after spinal-epidural analgesia. The lack of association between early labor neuraxial analgesia and an increased cesarean delivery rate suggests that request for analgesia, or greater analgesia use, may be markers for other risk factors for cesarean section, Wong said. Another clinically important finding of the Northwestern study was that duration of the first stage of labor following epidural administration of analgesia was shorter by approximately 80 minutes. Previous studies have found that epidural analgesia compared to systemic opioid analgesia was associated with a prolonged first stage of labor.

Wong’s co-authors on this study were Barbara M. Scavone, M.D.; Robert J. McCarthy, PharmD; John T. Sullivan, M.D.; Nathaniel T. Diaz, M.D.; Edward Yaghmour, M.D.; R-Jay L. Marcus, M.D.; Saadia S. Sherwani, M.D. Michelle T. Sproviero, M.D.; Roshani Patel; Carmen Robles; and Sharon Grouper, anesthesiology; and Alan M. Peaceman, M.D., obstetrics and gynecology.

Elizabeth Crown | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.northwestern.edu

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht A promising target for kidney fibrosis
21.04.2017 | Brigham and Women's Hospital

nachricht Stem cell transplants: activating signal paths may protect from graft-versus-host disease
20.04.2017 | Technische Universität München

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Making lightweight construction suitable for series production

More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.

Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...

Im Focus: Wonder material? Novel nanotube structure strengthens thin films for flexible electronics

Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.

"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...

Im Focus: Deep inside Galaxy M87

The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.

Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...

Im Focus: A Quantum Low Pass for Photons

Physicists in Garching observe novel quantum effect that limits the number of emitted photons.

The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...

Im Focus: Microprocessors based on a layer of just three atoms

Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.

Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Expert meeting “Health Business Connect” will connect international medical technology companies

20.04.2017 | Event News

Wenn der Computer das Gehirn austrickst

18.04.2017 | Event News

7th International Conference on Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaics in Freiburg on April 3-5, 2017

03.04.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

DGIST develops 20 times faster biosensor

24.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Nanoimprinted hyperlens array: Paving the way for practical super-resolution imaging

24.04.2017 | Materials Sciences

Atomic-level motion may drive bacteria's ability to evade immune system defenses

24.04.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>