Medical management for termination of second and third trimester pregnancies: A comparison of strategies

Roel De Heus, Giuseppe C.M. Graziosi*, Godelieve C.M.L. Christiaens, Hein W. Bruinse, Ben W.J. Mol

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

26 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Objective: Misoprostol and sulprostone are prostaglandins that can be used for the termination of second and third trimester pregnancy. The aim of the present study was to compare the effectiveness of both agents for the termination of second and third trimester pregnancy in cases of congenital or genetic abnormalities, and for the induction of labour in cases of intra-uterine foetal death. Study design: We collected data from all women who had been treated with misoprostol in the second or third trimester of pregnancy between January 2001 and July 2002 in cases of congenital or genetic abnormalities, and for the induction of labour in cases of intra-uterine foetal death. In cases where the foetus was alive, misoprostol was usually (77%) combined with mifepristone. Women were matched to women who had been treated with sulprostone for termination of second and third trimester pregnancy before 2001. We matched for hospital, previous vaginal delivery, intra-uterine death and duration of pregnancy. The primary outcome measure was time to delivery. Results: Since the treatment effect was different in patients in whom labour was induced for intra-uterine death and patients in whom labour was induced while the foetus was alive, the analysis was stratified for this parameter. In 94 patients with intra-uterine death, there was no significant difference in time to delivery, blood loss, operative removal of the placenta and need for pain relief between misoprostol and sulprostone. In vital pregnancy (n=96), time to delivery was significantly shorter in the misoprostol group. The relative risk for haemorrhage exceeding 1000 ml in this group was 0.40 (95% confidence interval, CI, 0.13-1.2). We observed no significant differences with respect to operative removal of the placenta or need for pain relief. Conclusion: In cases of intra-uterine death, the effectiveness of misoprostol for termination of pregnancy is comparable to that of sulprostone. In vital pregnancy, combination of mifepristone and misoprostol is more effective than sulprostone alone.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)16-21
Number of pages6
JournalEuropean Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology and Reproductive Biology
Volume116
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 10 Sep 2004

Keywords

  • Intra-uterine death
  • Mifepristone
  • Misoprostol
  • Sulprostone
  • Termination of pregnancy
  • Vital pregnancy

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