n South African Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology - Induction of labour at a regional hospital in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa : research

Volume 20, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 0038-2329
  • E-ISSN: 2078-5135



Clinicians working in maternity units must recognise the risks associated with induction of labour (IOL). They need to analyse the indications for IOL, methods used and outcomes on a regular basis to reduce complications.

To determine the indications for IOL and outcomes of current methods at a regional hospital in rural KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa.
Clinical data for all patients who had IOL over an 8-month period were collected and analysed.
There were 6 649 deliveries, and of these patients 532 had IOL (induction rate 8.0%); 502 patient files had complete information for analysis. The main indications for IOL were hypertensive disorders of pregnancy (43.6%, =219), post-dates pregnancy (25.9%, =130) and pre-labour rupture of the membranes (14.7%, =74). Other indications accounted for 15.7% of cases (=79). The most common methods of IOL were oral misoprostol (63.5%, =319) and vaginal misoprostol (30.3%, =152). Vaginal deliveries were achieved in 59.8% of patients (=300), and 40.2% (202) had caesarean sections (CSs); 69.7% of patients (=350) delivered within 24 hours (this includes CSs and vaginal deliveries). Normal vaginal births within 24 hours accounted for 44.4% of total deliveries (=223), and CSs within 24 hours for 24.3% (=122). There were 34 babies (6.8%) admitted to the neonatal intensive care unit. Prematurity accounted for 10 of these admissions (2.0% of all babies), hypoxic ischaemic encephalopathy for 9 (1.8%), and congenital pneumonia for 7 (1.4%). There was 1 early neonatal death.
Current methods of IOL at the rural study site are associated with outcomes similar to those in a report from an urban regional hospital in South Africa.

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


Article metrics loading...


This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error