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Does inducing labor pose any threats to baby?

Inducing labor can not only pose a threat to the mother, but to the baby as well.

There are various methods of inducing labor, the most common being the use of Pitocin, a synthetic oxytocin that is delivered through an IV to help speed up labor. It works by beginning or enhancing uterine contractions

While Pitocin aids in speeding up the delivery of a newborn, if mishandled it does carry serious risks including:

  • Change in fetal heart rate
  • Increased risk of infection in the mother and baby
  • Umbilical cord problems
  • Uterine rupture
  • Premature separation of the placenta
  • Rupture of the placenta
  • Increased need for cesarean section

Pitocin works by creating more intense and violent uterine contractions, however if the contractions become too prolonged they can cause physical injury to the infant.

By monitoring the fetal heart rate, many of these problems can be prevented.


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