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Induction Of Labor

There are 2 categories of inductions- medical and social. Medical inductions are inductions that your physician may recommend for medical reasons (either your health or the baby's health). Some reasons for medical inductions include high blood pressure, post-dates (see section on post-dates pregnancies) or diabetes.

A social induction is one which is performed on a woman who is near her due date, and her cervix is ready for labor. In general, social inductions are not done on first-time moms. Some reasons for a social induction include: a history of fast labors, your cervix is "favorable" (ready for labor), you have passed your due date.

Your physician will discuss induction with you at your office visit, and set it up with the hospital. Because we have a very busy labor and delivery unit, inductions are prone to being postponed. THE DATE AND TIME GIVEN TO YOU FOR YOUR INDUCTION IS NOT GUARANTEED. Medical inductions and laboring patients take priority over social inductions. YOU MUST CALL LABOR & DELIVERY ON THE MORNING OF YOUR
SCHEDULED INDUCTION AND MAKE SURE THEY HAVE ROOM FOR YOU. If your induction is postponed, the nurses will give you instructions for rescheduling. We apologize for the inconvenience this raises for people who have called their families to arrange for childcare. However, delay of a social induction is not negotiable
and calling our office will not change the delay. It is done in an effort to keep a safe ratio of nurses to patients helping to keep you and your baby healthy.

How Is Your Induction Performed?

The method and length of induction depends on the reason for induction. Social inductions are usually done on
women who have had babies before, and have a cervix which is "ready" for labor. Because of this, social inductions usually take less than 12 hours. Usually, after arrival at the hospital, your physician will break your water or start pitocin (or both) for your induction. Your physician will discuss the induction method with you (as well as pain control options) during your office visit.

Medical inductions can take more than 24 hours to accomplish, and carry an elevated risk of a cesarean section. They often take place in the setting of an "unfavorable" cervix. This means your cervix isn't really ready for labor yet, and we need to "ripen" it. There are several ways in which this can be done- prostaglandin gels, pitocin, and cytotec. Your physician will discuss this with you at your office visit.

DON'T FORGET- YOU MUST ALWAYS CALL THE HOSPITAL AT LEAST ONE HOUR PRIOR TO YOUR
SCHEDULED INDUCTION TO CONFIRM YOUR INDUCTION! If you arrive at the hospital unannounced and
they are too busy, you will be sent home. That's no fun, and is always disappointing- so please don't forget to call.