Complications of 3rd stage of labor.

By | 15th May 2012



  1. delayed labor
  2. fetal distress
  3. perineal rupture
  4. puerperal sepsis
  5. rectovaginal fistula
  6. labial laceration
  7. physical exhaustion of mother
  8. Genitourinary fistulas.
  9. Trauma to fetal head.
  10. fetal acidosis
  11. shock


Delayed labor.


Can be avoided by

  • Oxytocin infusion only if cephalopelvic disproportion excluded.
  • Episiotomy if pelvic floor is suspected to cause prolonged labor.
  • Forceps or ventose extraction
  • Performing cesarean section in contracted pelvis


Fetal distress


  • Avoid prolongation of labor.
  • Correct hypovolemia, hypertensive disorders, cardiac failure, and pulmonary disease of mother before commencement of labor.
  • Avoid overzealous oxytocin infusion.


Perineal rupture

Avoid by

  • Timely episiotomy
  • Performing C-Section for macrosomia


Uterine rupture

  • Avoid over use of oxytocin
  • Avoid prolonged labor.
  • Careful maintenance of partogran


Fetal acidosis.

  • Avoid prolonged labor
  • Avoid maternal dehydration.
  • Avoid maternal physical exhaustion.


Trauma to fetal head.


  • Use of ventose extractor instead of forceps.
  • Only experienced obstetrician should apply forceps for assisted delivery.


Puerperal sepsis


Aseptic measures should be applied during delivery




Avoid hemorrhage and maintain hemodynamic status.


Genitourinary and rectovaginal fistulas.




Avoid prolonged labor and direct trauma during the use of forceps.




Timely episiotomy.


Physical exhaustion of mother


  • Avoid prolonged labor.
  • Avoid overzealous oxytocin infusion.
  • Avoid dehydration of mother.
  • Avoid maternal ketoacidosis by IV dextrose infusion.