My friend gave me an update on our mutual friend whose baby is due next week. The doctors want to induce now, a week early, "because the baby has lost weight." How do they know this? By ultrasound. Which can be wrong by a pound or more in either direction.
Another friend had a similar situation in which the doctors wanted to induce because the baby seemed to not be growing. The mother carried small, and they had many many ultrasounds. When the baby was born she was a healthy 6+ pounds.

Induction has many upleasant side effects, including bringing the baby out into the world before he is ready, putting drugs into the baby, and giving the mom more intense and painful contractions that can lead to more drugs for mom and baby. Many other interventions frequently accompany induction. It is not a tool to be lightly used.

The evidence about the safety of ultrasounds had been unclear to me before, but now they are definitely on my list of routine interventions that can cause more harm than good.
Posted by Heather Daley on August 6, 2005, 12:16 pm | Read 2719 times
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