LEOPOLD’S MANEUVER (ABDOMINAL EXAMINATION

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Leopold’s Maneuvers are a systematic method of observation and palpation to determine
fetal position, presentation, lie and attitude. It is preferably performed after 24 weeks gestation when fetal outline can be palpated Keen observation of abdomen should give data about: 1. longest diameter in appearance (longest diameter (axis) is the length of the fetus) 2. location of apparent fetal movement (the location of the activity most likely reflects the position of the feet)

PREPARATION
(1) CARDINAL RULE: Instruct woman to empty bladder first. This will promotes comfort and allows for more productive palpation because fetal contour will not be obscured by a distended bladder (2) Place woman in dorsal recumbent position, supine with knee flexed to relax abdominal muscles. Place a small pillow under the head for comfort (3) Drape properly to maintain privacy (4) Explain procedures to gain patient’s cooperation (5) Warm hands first by rubbing them together before placing them over the woman’s abdomen to aid comfort. Cold hands may stimulate uterine contractions (6) Use the palm for palpation not fingers (7) During the first three maneuvers, stand facing the patients. For the last maneuver, stand facing patient’s feet

THE FOUR MANEUVERS
• FIRST MANEUVER: Fundal Grip: What fetal pole or part occupies the fundus? -palpation of the fundal area to determine which fetal part is located in the uterine fundus -to determine the presenting part or presentation (part of the fetus lying over the inlet) PROCEDURES (1) Nurse stands at the side of the bed, facing the client (2) Using both hands, feel for the fetal par lying in the fundus FINDINGS -The nurse-midwife should ascertain what is lying at the fundus by feeling the upper abdomen (fundus) with tips of both hands. Generally, she will find there is a mass, which will either be the head or the buttocks (breech) of he fetus. The nurse-midwife must decide which pole of the fetus; it is by observing three points: 1. Relative consistency- the head is harder/ firmer than the breech 2. Shape- if the head, it will be round and hard, and the transverse groove of the neck may be felt. The breech has no groove and usually feels more angular 3. Mobility- the head will move independently of the trunk; but the breech moves only in conjunction with the body -If the nurse-midwife feels the head, the fetus is in breech presentation; if the nurse-midwife feels the buttocks, it means the fetus is in vertex presentation • SECOND MANEUVER: Umbilical Grip: Which side is the fetal back? -to locate/identify the fetal back in relation to the right and left sides of the mother -to determine the fetal position (the relationship of the presenting part to one of the quadrants of the mother’s pelvis

-If it is firm. FINDINGS -Small fetal parts (knees and elbows) feel nodular with numerous angular nodulations -Fetal back feels smooth. just above the symphisis pubis. balottable and easily displaced it is not yet engaged. the head is extended . Information about the infant’s anteioposterior position may also be gained from this final maneuver PROCEDURES (1) The nurse-midwife faces the feet of the client (2) Place one hand each on either side of the lower pole of the uterus (3) Palpate the fetal head by pressing downward about 2 inches above the inguinal ligament (4) Use both hands FINDINGS -If descended deeply. between the thumb and the two fingers of one hand and then pressing together slightly and make gentle movements from side to side FINDINGS -If the presenting part moves. it must be the head. the head is flexed -If the cephalic prominence is on the same side of the fetal back. only a small portion of the fetal head will be palpated. If soft. If the presenting part is not movable felts as relatively fixed. it could be breech • FOURTH MANEUVER: Pelvic Grip: Which side is the cephalic prominence? Cephalic prominence is part of the fetal head that prevents the deep descent with one hand -to determines the degree of fetal head flexion or extension -to determine the attitude or habitus (degree of flexion of the fetal body. round. knoblike part. (2) With left palm stationary on the left side of the abdomen to steady the uterus the right palpates the right side of the uterus on a circular motion from top to lower segment of the uterus applying gentle but deep pressure to palpate the fetal outline and small fetal parts (3) The nurse-midwife then reverses her hands. -If cephalic prominence or brow or the baby is on the same side of the small fetal parts. hard.PROCEDURES (1) The nurse-midwife places the palmar surfaces of both hands on either side of the abdomen. facing the client (2) It should be conducted by gently gras ping the lower portion of the abdomen. or the relationship of fetal parts to ach other) -to determine the fetal descent -should only be done if fetus is in cephalic presentation. head and extremities. it is engaged. like a resistant surface • THIRD MANEUVER: Pawlik’s Grip: What fetal part lies above the pelvic inlet? -determine if the presenting part has entered the pelvis (engagement of presenting part) -to find the head at the pelvis and to determine the mobility of the presenting part PROCEDURES (1) Nurse-midwife stands at the side of the bed.

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