Pharmacological and mechanical interventions for labour induction in outpatient settings.
Vogel, Joshua P
Osoti, Alfred O
Kelly, Anthony J
Norman, Jane E
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Background Induction of labour is carried out for a variety of indications and using a range of methods. For women at low risk of pregnancy complications, some methods of induction of labour or cervical ripening may be suitable for use in outpatient settings. Objectives To examine pharmacological and mechanical interventions to induce labour or ripen the cervix in outpatient settings in terms of effectiveness, maternal satisfaction, healthcare costs and, where information is available, safety. Search methods We searched the Cochrane Pregnancy and Childbirth Group’s Trials Register (30 November 2016) and reference lists of retrieved studies. Selection criteria We included randomised controlled trials examining outpatient cervical ripening or induction of labour with pharmacological agents or mechanical methods. Cluster trials were eligible for inclusion. Data collection and analysis Two review authors independently assessed trials for inclusion and risk of bias, extracted data and checked them for accuracy. We assessed evidence using the GRADE approach. Main results This updated review included 34 studies of 11 different methods for labour induction with 5003 randomised women, where women received treatment at home or were sent home after initial treatment and monitoring in hospital. Studies examined vaginal and intracervical prostaglandin E₂ (PGE₂), vaginal and oral misoprostol, isosorbide mononitrate, mifepristone, oestrogens, amniotomy and acupuncture, compared with placebo, no treatment, or routine care. Trials generally recruited healthy women with a term pregnancy. The risk of bias was mostly low or unclear, however, in 16 trials blinding was unclear or not attempted. In general, limited data were available on the review's main and additional outcomes. Evidence was graded low to moderate quality.
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