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Journal of Perinatal Medicine

Official Journal of the World Association of Perinatal Medicine

Editor-in-Chief: Dudenhausen, Joachim W.

Editorial Board Member: / Bancalari, Eduardo / Greenough, Anne / Genc, Mehmet R. / Chervenak, Frank A. / Chappelle, Joseph / Bergmann, Renate L. / Bernardes, J.F. / Bevilacqua, G. / Blickstein, Isaac / Cabero Roura, Luis / Carbonell-Estrany, Xavier / Carrera, Jose M. / D`Addario, Vincenzo / D'Alton, MD, Mary E. / Dimitrou, G. / Grunebaum, Amos / Hentschel, Roland / Köpcke, W. / Kawabata, Ichiro / Keirse, M.J.M.C. / Kurjak M.D., Asim / Lee, Ben H. / Levene, Malcolm / Lockwood, Charles J. / Marsal, Karel / Makatsariya, Alexander / Nishida, Hiroshi / Ogata, Edward / Papp, Zoltán / Pejaver, Ranjan Kumar / Pooh, Ritsuko K. / Romero, Roberto / Saugstad, Ola D. / Schenker, Joseph G. / Sen, Cihat / Seri, Istvan / Vetter, Klaus / Winn, Hung N. / Young, Bruce K. / Zimmermann, Roland

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The effect of maternal obesity on the course of labor

Maribelle Verdiales1 / Carlos Pacheco1 / Wayne R. Cohen1

1Departments of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Jamaica Hospital Medical Center and the Weill Cornell Medical College, New York City, USA

Corresponding author: Wayne R. Cohen, MD Jacobi Medical Center Room 1S22 1400 Pelham Parkway South Bronx New York 10461 USA Tel.: +1-718-918-4567 Fax: +1-718-975-5668 ;

Citation Information: Journal of Perinatal Medicine. Volume 37, Issue 6, Pages 651–655, ISSN (Online) 1619-3997, ISSN (Print) 0300-5577, DOI: 10.1515/JPM.2009.110, July 2009

Publication History

Published Online:


Aim: To determine whether maternal obesity is associated with dysfunctional labor patterns.

Methods: In a case-control design we compared the graphic labor patterns of a group of 105 very obese subjects [body mass index (BMI) >35 kg/m2] with those of 113 lean controls (BMI<26 kg/m2). All entered spontaneous labor at term. Cases with birth weights >4 kg, diabetes mellitus, hypertension and prior cesarean delivery were excluded.

Results: The obese group had a significantly higher frequency of arrest of dilatation (17.6 vs. 5.2%; P=0.005).

Conclusions: Maternal obesity is associated with active phase labor dysfunction, specifically arrest of dilatation.

Keywords: Body mass index (BMI); dysfunctional labor; labor; maternal obesity

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