How is this possible??

In researching another topic, I came across this article:

Dystocia rate constant despite risk factors: parity, c-section, birth weight studied.

Here is an excerpt:

Shoulder dystocia appears to occur at a constant rate, despite increased cesarean sections and variations in other risk factors, Dr. Michael Lucas reported at the annual meeting of the Society for Gynecologic Investigation.

“It seems counterintuitive,” said Dr. Lucas of the University of Texas, Houston, in an interview. “There’s this notion that if we manipulate the risk factors we should see a lower rate of shoulder dystocia, but that does not appear to be the case.”

His study of more than 12,650 births in two Houston hospitals showed a similar rate of shoulder dystocia, despite differences in the risk factors of parity, birth weight, cesarean delivery, and operative vaginal delivery between the two hospital populations. The findings could have implications in the defense of shoulder dystocia cases.

“The argument has always been that there are risk factors for shoulder dystocia, which the physician should have acted on,” he said. “Our data suggest this is not true. It may at least be argued that we can take a population with a much different rate of risk factors and have virtually the same rate of shoulder dystocia. This is important clinically, because it supports the notion that our options and our ability to avoid trauma with this complication are limited.”

Shoulder dystocia happened in only about 1% of all cases in this study. For it to be roughly the same, despite wide variations of “known” risk factors is… interesting to say the least. Maybe it’s time for doctors to start looking at other causes and other forces. Like, iatrogenic shoulder dystocia — shoulders getting caught because the mother is lying on her back, with pressure on her coccyx making it unable to naturally move backwards as the baby moves past it, as well as her not being able to be in a squatting position, which widens the pelvic outlet by a couple of centimeters (without episiotomy). Maybe the baby having to fight against gravity (actually pointing upwards to get past the fixed tailbone) has something to do with it. Maybe the baby not being able to shift and rotate naturally because the mom is not allowed to position herself in such a way as to allow the baby’s shoulders to come free, has something to do with it.

Nah! Can’t be! There’s gotta be some other reason. Like, maybe they were born in a full moon. Or a new moon. Or the moms were wearing green socks. Or had sips of water instead of just ice chips. No — I’ve got it! — it’s because the moms were born under an unlucky sign. Doctors should have to take astrology and determine if women are at a cosmic disadvantage before allowing them to give birth. Maybe it’s karma — she did something bad in a past life, so now she’s getting paid back… or maybe the baby did something bad and his having shoulder dystocia is paying him back for being bad in a past life.

I don’t know what it is, but it’s gotta be something! Because cutting women open for no other reason than that they appear to have one risk factor for shoulder dystocia doesn’t seem to change anything.

Maybe the nurses had pink underwear? …or red hair? …or…

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2 Responses

  1. The excerpt mentioned accounting for the risk factors of “parity, birth weight, cesarean delivery, and operative vaginal delivery” but it didn’t mention maternal diabetes or maternal obesity, also risk factors. I wonder if the study addressed that. Have the rates of GDM and obesity increased to effectively negate the decrease in the other risk factors?

  2. It may be that the rates of maternal diabetes and obesity were similar in the two study groups. It would seem as if there were a great disparity between the rates of maternal obesity or diabetes that the study would have to address that; but it is possible that such information was not accessible to the researchers.

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