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Birth Trauma: Causes of Shoulder Dystocia |

Posted Mar 16 2010 12:00am

Shoulder dystocia cannot usually be predicted in advance and there is a certain degree of risk that it will occur during any full-term birth. However, there are a few risk factors that appear to predispose the problem in some cases. These include:

  • Delivering a Big Baby - There are lots of reasons why a baby may be larger than normal. It may simply be hereditary or it could be due to conditions such as diabetes, a pregnancy that has exceeded 42 weeks,or there may be congenital causes. Alternatively, it may be that the baby is a normal size but the maternal pelvis is smaller than average.
  • Maternal Pelvic Problems - Certain diseases can cause the pelvis to become mis-shapen, such as rickets. However, the maternal pelvis may also have been damaged in accidents, or the mother may have been born with congenital anomalies of the hips.
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