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Morning is Better Than Evening for Labor Induction

Researchers find it leads to lower rates of oxytocin infusion and operative vaginal birth

TUESDAY, Aug. 1 (HealthDay News) -- Women admitted to the hospital in the morning for induced labor are less likely to need operative vaginal birth or oxytocin infusion than those admitted in the evening, according to a study in the August issue of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

Jodie M. Dodd, Ph.D., of the University of Adelaide in South Australia, and colleagues studied 620 women who were scheduled for prostaglandin induction of labor. They assigned 280 women to the morning admission group and 340 women to the evening admission group.

The researchers found no group differences in the primary outcomes, which were primary vaginal birth not achieved in 24 hours, uterine hyperstimulation with associated fetal heart rate changes and Caesarean delivery. But they found that the morning group was less likely to require oxytocin infusion (45 percent) than the evening group (54.1 percent). They also found that nulliparous women admitted in the morning were less likely to require operative vaginal birth (16.1 percent) compared to those admitted in the evening (34.2 percent).

"Although there were no differences in degree of maternal satisfaction with their induction, labor and birth, more women in the evening admission group disliked the interruptions overnight and lack of sleep," the authors conclude. "For women who require induction of labor, consideration should be given to admission in the morning. This has implications for midwifery and medical staffing levels."

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