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Pregnancy, Labor and Delivery


The topic of “pregnancy, labor and delivery” is rather ambitious as many full textbooks have been written about it.

My intent here is to only give a brief overview of pitfalls and dangers to minimize risk for the pregnant woman and her baby. Whoever has worked in this field for a number of decades will agree with me that sometimes during delivery of a baby within seconds or minutes terrible emergencies can occur, some of which could have been anticipated or prevented. Other bad outcomes, no matter how careful the physician or the midwife follows the patient, cannot be averted. The topics I am discussing here are linked to this page.

Since 1940 the infant mortality in the United States has dropped from 47 per 1000 births to just under 8 per 1000 births in 1994. Since then infant mortality rates (thanks to for this link) have further declined to around 6%.

Infant mortality is the measure of all deaths of infants up to one year after birth. Half of all these deaths occur in the first day of life. Many of these are due to risk factors that can be identified during the pregnancy and many of these risks can be further minimized by closely monitoring high risk pregnancies during the birthing process. I will touch on the high risk factors under high risk pregnancies. Here I will mainly concentrate on the normal pregnancy and the importance of regular prenatal visits.

 Pregnancy, Labor and Delivery

Pregnancy, Labor and Delivery



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4. The Merck Manual, 7th edition, by M. H. Beers et al., Whitehouse  Station, N.J., 1999. Chapter 245.

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19. The Merck Manual, 7th edition, by M. H. Beers et al., Whitehouse  Station, N.J., 1999. Chapter 251.

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25. 19th Annual World Congress on Anti-Aging and Aesthetic Medicine in Las Vegas (December 8-10, 2011) Dr. Hertoghe lectured on “Premature aging caused by hormone deficiencies in utero”.

Last modified: November 12, 2014

This outline is only a teaching aid to patients and should stimulate you to ask the right questions when seeing your doctor. However, the responsibility of treatment stays in the hands of your doctor and you.