Because of increasing advancement in the medical field, the frequency and popularity of induced labors has grown. Though this may be an ideal choice in certain situations, labor is generally safest when delivery begins naturally. If you have the choice, letting labor start without medical intervention is best, however, that is not always an option due to certain health circumstances that put you and the baby at risk. In these high-risk situations, your doctor may recommend an induced labor.
Some conditions that may require induction include uterine infections, eclampsia, organ damage, or other pre-existing medical conditions such as diabetes or obesity. Because these conditions may cause health issues for you and the baby, many doctors will advise inducing labor once the baby has developed the ability to breathe on his or her own.
Before agreeing to an induced labor, however, it is important that you are aware of the risks that come from early induction. Induced labor often results in C-sections, bleeding after delivery, increased placental abruption, or a dangerously low heart rate in the baby. Labor induction may also increase your risk for infections or uterine rupture. Though this is rare, uterine rupture does happen in some cases and is a serious complication that occurs by the uterus tearing along the scar line of a previous C-section or surgery. An even rarer scenario is when the uterus ruptures in a woman who has never undergone uterine surgery. Both of these situations are extremely rare, but because there is a slight chance of this occurring through induced labor, it must be mentioned. If a uterine rupture were to occur, an emergency C-section or uterus removal may be necessary due to life-threatening circumstances.
Because of these risks, it is recommended that labor induction only be done in specific situations where a normal-length pregnancy is causing health concerns for the mother and/or child. As always, it is important that you consult first with your OB doctor about the nature of your pregnancy to find out if induced labor may be best for you.
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