How to have a safe and fun pregnancy with the best of the best
It’s a cliché in our profession that women are our biggest supporters.
But how do we make sure we can take care of them during pregnancy, when they’re going through the most intense period of their lives?
A new study by researchers from the University of California, Berkeley, shows that women in a clinical setting with an experienced obstetrician can have their most effective pregnancy results, with minimal risk of complications.
The study, published in the Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, found that an experienced OB-GYN and a highly experienced obstetrical nurse with an approved surgical procedure had a lower risk of preterm birth compared to those women with a single OB-gynician.
The research also found that women with no experience in obstetrics had the highest risk of maternal mortality compared to the general population.
The study also found an overall reduction in postpartum morbidity and mortality in the group that had an experienced nurse compared to women in the general obstetric community.
“Our results suggest that the experience of an experienced doctor, obstetric nurse and nurse practitioner is critical to improve maternal health outcomes in the setting of maternal care,” Dr. David A. Stump, lead author and a professor of obstetresiology and gynecology at the UC Berkeley School of Medicine, said in a statement.
“Having experience in a particular field helps us better understand the specific issues, challenges, and options that are appropriate for each individual patient.”
The study included 835 women who were part of a population-based birth cohort study of 6,000 women from three major US cities.
Each participant was recruited by the study’s investigator, a physician in the obstetrative community, who was trained in obstetric care, maternal health and delivery.
A second investigator, also in the same field, was involved in the study.
All women were asked to complete a questionnaire on their health and health care needs, including birth, pregnancy, delivery and postpartums.
The researchers then collected data on outcomes and health-related behaviours, such as stress, sleep, sleep duration, and sleep quality.
The results showed that women who had an OB-gyn, obstetrical resident, or nurse practitioner were significantly less likely to have preterm births, a risk that was increased for women who did not have an experienced midwife.
They also had significantly lower levels of maternal morbidity, maternal mortality and postnatal morbidity compared to non-experienced midwives.
For the women who reported they had an obstetric practitioner, they had significantly higher rates of pre-eclampsia, high risk pregnancy loss, postpartomies and preterm delivery compared to all other women.
The researchers also found a significantly lower risk for maternal morbidities for the group who had no obstetric experience.
“We were surprised that having an experienced practitioner led to significantly lower postpartomic morbidity,” Dr Stump said.
“We did not expect the results to be so robust.
The authors were also very careful to make clear that these results were not generalizable to all OB-gyn doctors, so it is important to recognize that there is still a lot of work to be done before we can say that OB-geo-physicians are more likely to deliver better babies.”
Dr. Stamp and his colleagues are currently analyzing the results of the study to understand whether other OB-Gyn doctors are also more likely than non-ob-geographers to deliver babies with lower risks of postpartoms, post-ejection or preterm deliveries.
The University of Cincinnati is also investigating how OB-Gynecologists are performing preterm caesareans.