After nine months of waiting, the onset of labor is an exciting and anxiety-provoking event. Most women have a normal labor and delivery. But some women may experience a difficult labor requiring a cesarean delivery or assistance with vacuum or forceps, and others may experience more serious complications.

This and other related HealthMaps guide you through the many issues you may be facing as the time of delivery draws nearer:

  • The Pre-labor Decisions HealthMap covers some decisions you should make before labor, such as when you need to go to the hospital, what kind of health care provider you want to deliver your baby, and how you should prepare for childbirth.
  • The Labor HealthMap outlines the stages of labor and discusses ways to augment and induce labor, as well as the important role of the cervix during labor.
  • The Difficult Labor HealthMap covers the different kinds of problems that can cause a difficult labor, specifically power and passage problems. The management of breech births and shoulder dystocia are discussed in detail.
  • The Potential Maternal Complications HealthMap guides you through the possible problems facing a mother during childbirth. Bleeding from the uterus caused by atony, inversion, or rupture is discussed in detail, as well as amnionitis.
  • The Pain Relief During Labor HealthMap outlines the different techniques and risks for pain relief during labor, such as intravenous and inhaled medications, local injections, and regional, spinal, and general anesthesia.
  • The Delivery HealthMap discusses the whole delivery process and the specific issues surrounding cesarean sections and assisted vaginal deliveries.
  • The Vaginal Delivery HealthMap describes the process of vaginal delivery and the complications that may arise, especially due to episiotomies and tears in the vagina or cervix.