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U.S. Women in Labor Longer Than They Were 50 Years Ago
Date:3/31/2012

y than 50 years ago -- 12 percent vs. 3 percent.

"Women are in labor longer [today] because they are admitted [to the hospital] earlier," said Dr. Michael Cabbad, chairman of obstetrics/gynecology and chief of maternal/fetal medicine at the Brooklyn Hospital Center in New York City. "There is a tendency for women to come to the hospital in an earlier phase of labor because of fear of arriving too late."

When a women is admitted today, she is started on intravenous fluids and put in a bed, which slows down the labor process, Cabbad added.

The new report appears in the March 10 online edition of the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

More information

For more on childbirth, visit the U.S. National Library of Medicine.

SOURCES: Michael Cabbad, M.D., chairman of obstetrics/gynecology and chief of maternal/fetal medicine at the Brooklyn Hospital Center in New York City; March 30, 2012, news conference with Katherine Laughon, M.D., Division of Epidemiology, Statistics, and Prevention Research, Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development; March 10, 2012, American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, online


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