FIGO good practice recommendations on modifiable causes of iatrogenic preterm birth

Catalina M. Valencia*, Ben W. Mol, Bo Jacobsson, FIGO Working Group for Preterm Birth

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Iatrogenic preterm birth is a planned delivery that occurs before 37 weeks of gestation due to maternal and/or fetal causes. However, in some cases, such deliveries also occur with no apparent medical indication. The increasing numbers of iatrogenic preterm deliveries worldwide have led researchers to identify modifiable causes that allow the formulation of preventive strategies that could impact the overall preterm birth rate. The present document contains the FIGO (International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics) Working Group for Preterm Birth recommendations, aiming to reduce the rates of iatrogenic preterm birth based on four of the most common clinical scenarios and issues related to iatrogenic preterm delivery. The working group supports efforts to identify the contribution of iatrogenic preterm delivery to the overall preterm birth rate and encourages health authorities to establish preventive measures accordingly. We encourage care providers to maintain single embryo transfer policies to prevent multiple pregnancies as a substantial contributor of iatrogenic preterm birth. The working group also recommends that efforts to reduce unnecessary cesarean sections must be warranted, and mechanisms to ensure the appropriate time of delivery and strengthening of education and communication processes must be pursued.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8-12
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Journal of Gynecology and Obstetrics
Issue number1
Early online date14 Sep 2021
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2021


  • elective delivery
  • iatrogenic preterm birth
  • modifiable causes


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