Preterm Labor

Is defined as rhythmic uterine contractions that produce cervical changes prior to completion of 37 weeks of gestation.

Preterm Labor
Preterm Labor


1- Demographics:

- Upper and lower extremes of age.

- Lower socioeconomic status.

- Inadequate prenatal care.

- Race ( increase in blacks).

2- lifestyle and employment.

- Smoking and drug abuse.

- Prolonged periods of standing.

- Fatigue and long hours of work.

- Heavy work and lifting.

3- Reproductive history:

- Previous preterm delivery.

- Incompetent cervix.

- Spontaneous or induced abortion.

4- Uterine anomalies e.g. leiomyomata.

5- Weight again: low weight or low weight gain may increase risk.

6- Anemia: probably due to other risk factors.

7- Uterine size and placental abnormalities:

- Multiple gestations.

- Placenta previa.

- Polyhydramnios.

- Abruptio placenta.

8- Premature rupture of membranes.

9- Vaginal bleeding.

10- Surgery: abdominal procedures.

11- Infection: UTI, pneumonia, malaria, typhoid fever, syphilis, gonorrhoea, amniotic fluid infection, vaginitis.

12- Other associations:

- Fetal gender ( male fetuses have a shorter gestation period).

- low magnesium level.


- Cervical dilation.

- Membranes: ruptured or not.

- Presences of severe preeclampsia and haemorrhage.

- Ultrasonography: to determine fetal gestational age, condition and weight.

Management and intervention:

- Special prenatal care for high-risk women.

a- Frequent visits for weeks 22 to 32.

b- Urine culture at 24 weeks.

c- Vaginal examination for pH.

d- Education on nutrition and preterm labour.

Signs and symptoms reinforced :

- Increase or change in vaginal discharge.

- Uterine contraction.

- Vaginal bleeding or leaking fluid.

Bed rest and hydration: increase uterine blood flow.

Continuous monitoring

Fetal maturation therapy: glucocorticoid therapy.


Hydatidiform ( Vesicular ) mole

Hypotonic And Hypertonic Uterine Contraction

Contracted Pelvis and Cephalopelvic Disproportion

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