OBJECTIVE: To determine the frequency, risk factors, complications and outcome of obstructed
labour in our setup.
STUDY DESIGN: A retrospective study.
SETTING: Obstetrics and Gynaecology Unit IV, Liaquat University Hospital, Jamshoro – Pakistan
from January 2004 to December 2006 (three years).
Methods: Patients’ records, labour room registers, operation theatre books and perinatal records
were reviewed retrospectively to gather information about patients admitted with obstructed
RESULTS: Out of 2126 hospital deliveries during the study period, 44 (2.1%) were admitted with
obstructed labour as an emergency. Only 13 (29.5%) had received antenatal care at some stage
of pregnancy. Thirty-two (72.2%) patients belonged to rural areas. Mean duration of labour was
15.9±11.6 hours. Cephalo-pelvic disproportion in 22 (49.3%) cases was the most common risk
factor of obstruction, followed by malposition/malpresentation in 19 (43.3%) cases. Caesarean
section was the most common mode of delivery (81.1%). Three (6.8%) patients had ruptured
uterus. Still birth rate was very high i.e. 14 (31%) and neonatal deaths were 4 (9%), while 26
(49%) babies survived with minor problems.
CONCLUSION: Obstructed labour still poses a great maternal and foetal problem in our setup.
Malpractice by untrained persons is a major factor. Most of these cases are preventable by
proper antenatal care provided by properly trained persons.
Obstructed labour, antenatal care, caesarean section, perinatal mortality, complications.