Contact Us: (770) 752-0824
After Hours Emergency: (770) 752-0824

Induction of Labor

"To Induce or Not to Induce"

Most women go into labor spontaneously near the due date and will not require induction of labor.  However, there are conditions and complications of pregnancy that require the baby to be delivered before the spontaneous onset of contractions.  Some of the common conditions include, but are not limited to, prolonged pregnancy > 42weeks gestation, gestational diabetes, gestational hypertension, preeclampsia, low amniotic fluid levels or leaking, and advanced maternal age in women age 40 and above.  Some patients may elect to be induced without medical indication from 39wks onward.  This is considered a social induction based on patient convenience and it is purely elective.  It is generally not advisable to induce labor prior to 39wks UNLESS medically necessary due to a complication of pregnancy.  The risks of continuing a pregnancy to mother and/or baby must always be weighed against the risks of delivering a baby prior to the spontaneous onset of labor.  If your physician feels you need to be induced, a cervical exam will be performed to determine the method of induction .  Medical treatments that can be used to induce labor when indicated include the following:

Membrane Stripping - typicall ydone in the office as an aggressive cervical exam that separates amniotic membrane from side of uterine attachment to stimulate contractions

Cervical Ripening Agents  - medications known as prostagladins which soften cervix and prepare it for labor

Mechanical Dilators - balloons that are inserted into the cervix and help the cervix open via stretching

Amniotomy - artificially breaking the "bag of water" to allow leakage of fluid and start contractions

Pitocin Infusion - IV Administration of synthetic oxytocin, the hormone secreted in labor to start regular contractions

Risks Involved With Induction

Inductions can sometimes take up to 2 days to produce labor, though it usually takes less time. It may take longer for first pregnancies or those being induced for medical reasons prior to 39wks. Women who get induced still have access to the same options for pain medications in labor.  Some women undergoing induction complain that time pain of induced labor is different than spontaneous labor.  The contractions can be long and strong and typically require continuous monitoring of the mother and baby during the induction process.  Some risks of induction include:  change in fetal heart rates, increased risk of fetal distress, increased risk of infection, increased risk of cesearean section.  However, when medical complications develop in pregnancy, the benefits of induction outweigh the risks.

If you are being recommended for induction, you will typically report to Labor and Delivery at Northside Hospital at a specified time.   For more information, please feel free to discuss with your physician during your scheduled appointment time. 

Contact | Locations | Privacy Policy | FAQ
Copyright © 2015 | North Atlanta Obstetrics & Gynecology