New drug for child birth

For mothers-to-be normal delivery may soon be almost pain-free. Doctors at the All India Institute of Medical sciences (AIIMS) are using a medicine, on trial basis, to soften the cervix which helps in child birth. Initial results show that there is less pain and fewer complications in this process. The application of this medicine called misoprostol has shown good results in medical abortions - which follows similar procedure i,e cervical dilation. It reduces the operative time and lessens the pain.

A study was conducted at AIIMS in which 600 women who came for termination of pregnancy between February 2007 and July 2009 were administered the medicine. It showed that the use of the medicine helped reduce pain and operative blood loss and duration. "Women treated with the medicine had the highest baseline cervical dilation, least need for cervical dilation and lowest operative blood loss and duration as compared to those treated without it," said Dr Suneeta MIttal, the head of the department of gynaecology and obstetrics department, who led the project.

She said that in the traditional process for medical abortion through manual process, there is heavy bleeding and women are required to come two to three times. "But using this medicine, the same process can be carried in four hours. There is less injury to the vagina. The study showed that use of the medicine can decrease frequency of complete abortions and the continuation of pregnancy," Mittal added.

The results of this study, funded by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, has been published in the International Journal of Gynecology and Obstetrics. It is likely to be carried out in district health centers across the country now.

"At many rural centers, where there is no facility for surgical abortion, manual abortion can be easily conducted using the medicine for cervical dilation. The medicine is not costly also," said the doctor.

Because medical abortion through the manual process involves the same procedure as normal delivery, further trials are being conducted on pregnant women who come to the hospital for child birth. Child birth through normal delivery is avoided by women mostly as it is painful. But with the new medicine proving effective in cervical dilation required for removal of the neonate doctors there are hopes to give a fillip to the process of natural birth using the new method.

"The use of this drug for childbirth is still in research phase. We are still looking into the complications involved and no data has been published on the same. We should wait," said Mittal.

In case of child birth, the pregnant women are given the medicine three hours before the delivery. It is placed into the posterior vaginal fornix. The drug helps soften the surface of the cervices and thus the delivery becomes easier. It reduces pain

Similar Threads: