Induction of labor is a necessary procedure in some cases where the gestation is prolonged beyond week 41. But, labor is also usually induced when the waters break and after several hours the expulsion process does not start. In cases where it is detected that the umbilical cord is choking the baby, an induction of labor can also be chosen to avoid the risks that this entails.
The problem arises when the chances of induction of labor end with a caesarean section is highas explained in a study. As they explain, this is related to “an unfavorable cervix at the onset of labor”. However, there are situations in which “women with a favorable cervix are not at increased risk of caesarean section,” they point out.
How does induction of labor take place?
From the Spanish Society of Gynecology and Obstetrics (SEGO), they explain that there are two ways to induce labor induction. One is to provide drugs, such as prostaglandins. This method helps the contractions to start. It is common to use it when a woman’s water breaks but labor has not started.
Another form of induction of labor is through mechanical means, according to the SEGO. A vaginal exam can help peel off the membranes the uterus to stimulate the onset of contractions. In some cases, you may also choose to break the amniotic sac.
When is induction of labor recommended?
Induction of labor is a last resource which should be taken into account when, as indicated by the SEGO, gestation extends beyond weeks 41-42, it is suspected that the baby is not receiving the nutrients it needs (for example, if there is has a knot in the umbilical cord) or there are a series of complications that require this measure.
Also, when a woman’s water breaks and labor does not start within 24 hours, induction of labor is necessary. Likewise, the SEGO informs that in situations where there is an infection or suspicion of fetal deathinduction is necessary.
Risks of induction of labor
The reason why induction of labor increases the risk of it ending in cesarean section is due, in addition to the cervical situation mentioned in the aforementioned article, because labor usually has a longer duration. Therefore, if it spreads too far and life-threatening suffering is suspected, a caesarean section is essential according to the SEGO.
Another risk is that vaginal delivery may require the use of forceps if the cervix does not expand enough for the baby to pass without problems. This instrument can cause tears in the mother and bruises in the baby.
induction of labor too increases bleeding after eviction. Therefore, medical recommendations should be followed, as in some cases cesarean section may be better without induction. This is the case of situations in which the baby is very large and it will be difficult for him to exit through the birth canal.