Professor Gordon Smith has published a review in The Obstetrician & Gynaecologist calling for better monitoring of women during their pregnancy to prevent stillbirth. 

The review, Prevention of Stillbirth, is available here. 

In response, Janet Scott, Research and Prevention Lead at Sands said:

“Sands welcomes Professor Smith’s clear overview and critique of recent developments in stillbirth prevention. 1000 stillbirths each year occur at the end of pregnancy, when a baby at risk of stillbirth might safely survive outside the womb if delivered on time. The paper’s focus on improving detection and timely delivery of these babies is extremely important.

“We support the call for a more open approach to induction of labour at term. Research shows that induction after 39 weeks gestation brings no increased harm to mother or baby, and significantly reduces perinatal mortality, so it is hard to see why this option is not made more frequently available to pregnant women, who then could make their own informed choice about the birth of their child.

“Sands also strongly endorses the call for all maternity units to use computerised CTG (cardiotocography) for assessing babies’ wellbeing. Non-computerised CTG has significantly poorer outcomes, yet many units around the UK have no access at all to computerised monitoring.”

Notes to editors: 

Gordon CS Smith. Prevention of stillbirth. The Obstetrician & Gynaecologist (TOG) 2015; DOI: 10.1111/tog.12197 is available here: onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/tog.12197/abstract