NPR

Pregnancy Debate Revisited: To Induce Labor, Or Not?

Young women with simple pregnancies can safely ask a doctor to induce labor, a study finds. It doesn't increase their risk of needing a C-section after all and can even offer potential benefits.
Inducing labor at 39 weeks may involve IV medications and continuous fetal monitoring. But if the pregnancy is otherwise uncomplicated, mother and baby can do just fine, the latest evidence suggests. Source: Loic Venance

Healthy women with normal pregnancies can opt to have labor induced without worrying that the decision will make a cesarean section more likely, according to a major study published in this week's New England Journal of Medicine.

Obstetricians currently induce labor when a delivery has failed to progress, or if a woman is far overdue for giving birth. But when women who have no medical need for induced labor have talked to their doctors, "We've been saying, 'Well you know one thing you need to know is it does increase the, an obstetrics researcher at the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development.

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from NPR

NPR3 min read
'Loro': Sorrentino's Portrait Of Berlusconi As A Once-Powerful Lion In Winter
This "stylish but overloaded satire is less sober narrative than drunken tone poem — a buzzing, throbbing attempt to simulate" what it was like inside the mogul-turned-prime-minister's circle.
NPR8 min read
What She Brought With Her
It can be tempting to encapsulate Celia Cruz's life with a single phrase: "The Queen of Salsa." But she carried with her a deeper musical history from Cuba than that phrase can encompass.
NPR5 min readWellness
Russian Lab Explosion Raises Question: Should Smallpox Virus Be Kept Or Destroyed?
The lab is one of two known places that store live samples of the virus that causes the disease. Scientists use them for research. But there is concern about accidental or intentional release.