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Korean Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology 2007;50(10):1330-1335.
Published online October 1, 2007.
The effects of epidural analgesia on labor progress and perinatal outcomes.
Si Won Lee, Jae Hyug Yang, Hye Jin Cho, Dal Soo Hong, Moon Young Kim, Hyun Mee Ryu, June Seek Choi, Jin Hoon Chung, Young Suck Jee
1Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Cheil General Hospital and Women's Healthcare Center, Kwandong University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea. jhy60408@yahoo.co.kr
2Department of Anesthesiology, Cheil General Hospital and Women's Healthcare Center, Kwandong University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
Abstract
OBJECTIVE
We evaluated the effects of epidural analgesia on labor progress and perinatal outcomes in nulliparous women. METHODS: Between June 2004 and December 2004, we included total one hundred and thirty-two normal near term nulliparous women in early spontaneous labor or rupture of membranes for a prospective analysis. Patients were divided into those who received epidural analgesia (study group n=66) and those who did not (control group n=66). In order to evaluate the effects of epidural analgesia on labor progress, we compared the duration of active phase of labor and second stage of labor, cervical dilatation on admission, Bishop score and labor interval between the groups. We also compared perinatal outcomes between the two groups. RESULTS: The duration of active phase of labor was 4.7+/-2.0 hours in the study group and 3.6+/-1.9 hours in the control group showing a statistically significant prolongation in the duration of active phase of labor and significant slowing in the rate of cervical dilatation (p<0.05). The second stage of labor was also prolonged slightly in the study group (65.1+/-39.0 minutes) compared to the control group (54.1+/-33.5 minutes) but no statistical significance was noted. There was no significant difference in perinatal outcomes. CONCLUSION: Epidural analgesia may prolong active phase of labor. Therefore, we should always consider the effect of epidural analgesia before we decide to perform cesarean section.
Key Words: Epidural analgesia, Labor progress, Perinatal outcomes


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