Bed Rest: Pros & Cons

Bed Rest has been a standard of care for many ailments. In obstetrics “lying in” hospitals for post partum care were common. Even today, with lack of effective preventative measures for preterm labor or low amniotic fluid, the practitioner is often tempted to advise bed rest or other activity restrictions.

Prolonged bed rest carries many adverse physical consequences including muscle deconditioning, bone demineralization, cardiovascular deconditioning, and venous thrombosis. Since pregnancy is a hypercoaguable state, this last potential risk can result in deep vein clots and life threatening pulmonary embolism.
Bed rest also carries considerable emotional and social burdens. Its financial effect in lost income can be devastating.
In recent studies of a high risk group of women with short cervices, those with activity restriction were 2.5 times more likely to have preterm birth before 34 weeks. In multiple systematic reviews on the use of bedrest to treat various pregnancy complications, NONE found sufficient evidence to support its use, but many studies documented the physical, psychological and financial harm with its use.

The providers at Women’s Health Care remain up-to-date on the latest recommendations for maximizing safety in pregnancy. Call for an appointment today so that we may share our knowledge with you –

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