High dependency care in an obstetric setting in the UK

K Saravanakumar, L Davies, M Lewis, G M Cooper

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)


Our objective was to establish the utilisation and pattern of high dependency care in a tertiary referral obstetric unit. Data of pregnant or recently pregnant women admitted to the obstetric high dependency unit from 1984 to 2007 were included to evaluate the admission rate. Four years' information of an ongoing prospective audit was collated to identify the indications for admission, maternal monitoring, transfers to intensive care unit, and location of the baby. The overall high dependency unit admission rate is 2.67%, but increased to 5.01% in the most recent 4 years. Massive obstetric haemorrhage is now the most common reason for admission. Invasive monitoring was undertaken in 30% of women. Two-thirds of neonates (66.3%) stayed with their critically ill mothers in the high dependency unit. Transfer to the intensive care unit was needed in 1.4 per 1000 deliveries conducted. We conclude that obstetric high dependency care provides holistic care from midwives, obstetricians and anaesthetists while retaining the opportunity of early bonding with babies for critically ill mothers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1081-6
Number of pages6
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2008


  • Critical Care
  • England
  • Epidemiologic Methods
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant Care
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Intensive Care Units
  • Length of Stay
  • Monitoring, Physiologic
  • Obstetric Labor Complications
  • Obstetrics
  • Patient Admission
  • Patient Transfer
  • Postpartum Hemorrhage
  • Pre-Eclampsia
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications


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