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Elective Induction Not Always Tied to Higher C-Section Rate

In nulliparous women with favorable cervix, has similar labor outcomes as expectant management

THURSDAY, Aug. 26 (HealthDay News) -- Elective labor induction among nulliparous women with a favorable cervix carries the same possibility of resulting in cesarean delivery as expectant management, though it might require increased resource use, according to a study in the September issue of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

In a retrospective cohort study, Sarah S. Osmundson, M.D., of Northwestern University in Chicago, and colleagues compared outcomes of 294 nulliparous women with a singleton gestation and a favorable cervix who underwent elective induction of labor between 39 and 40 5/7 weeks of gestation with the outcomes of 294 nulliparous women who were expectantly managed beyond 39 weeks of gestation.

The investigators found that the incidence of cesarean delivery was similar in women who underwent elective induction and those who were expectantly managed (20.8 versus 20.1 percent; P = .84). In addition, there were no significant differences in other maternal or neonatal outcome measures. However, women who underwent an elective labor induction experienced significantly longer labor and delivery durations between admission and delivery (median 12.7 versus 9.0 hours).

"For nulliparous women with a favorable cervix, elective labor induction has a similar chance of resulting in cesarean delivery as expectant management, although it appears to result in an increase in resource use," the authors write.

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