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2-9. Trauma During Pregnancy

Remember that trauma to a pregnant female involves not only the woman but her baby. There are two patients. Follow this procedure:

Initial Procedure.

  • Ensure that the patient's airway is adequate.
  • Assist in breathing, as needed. Administer 100 percent oxygen, if needed.
  • Control bleeding promptly.
  • Treat life-threatening injuries.
  • If possible, transport the patient in a lateral recumbent position (patient on the left side with the right thigh and knee drawn up) rather than a supine position (patient lying on her back).

General Information.

  • Transport to hospital. Potential damage to the fetus cannot be adequately assessed in the field. Even if the mother has sustained only minor injuries, there may have been major trauma to the baby. This is especially true in accidents involving significant deceleration forces. Every pregnant woman who has been in an accident must, therefore, be evaluated in the hospital even if her injuries are trivial.
  • Two patients. If the woman has been critically or hopelessly injured, remember that there are two patients. It may not be possible to save both lives. At times, the baby can be saved even when the mother cannot. For this reason, you must give an all out effort toward resuscitation of the mother even if saving her life seems hopeless.

Section III. MANAGEMENT OF MOTHER AND NEWBORN DURING NORMAL DELIVE RY IN AN

David L. Heiserman, Editor

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Revised: June 06, 2015