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Prelabor rupture of the membranes 

Prelabor rupture of the membranes
Prelabor rupture of the membranes

Murray Enkin

, Marc J. N. C. Keirse

, James Neilson

, Caroline Crowther

, Lelia Duley

, Ellen Hodnett

, and Justus Hofmeyr

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date: 26 November 2020

“Prelabor rupture of the membranes is defined as spontaneous rupture of the membranes before the onset of regular uterine contractions. It is often referred to as ‘premature rupture of the membranes’, but that name may be misleading, because the word ‘premature’ has also been associated with low birthweight and preterm birth. The expression ‘prelabor rupture’ is more appropriate and precise.When prelabor rupture of the membranes occurs before 37 weeks gestation, it is referred to as ‘preterm prelabor rupture of the membranes’; at or after 37 weeks, it is referred to as ‘term prelabor rupture of the membranes’. The distinction, while arbitrary, is important both for prognosis and for care. This chapter covers diagnosis, examination, risk of infection and fetal immaturity, as well as care before and after the onset of labor, induction, prophylactic antibiotics, and comparison of prostaglandins and oxytocin.”

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