Decels during contractions - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 3 Old 07-15-2005, 09:11 AM - Thread Starter
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Can someone please explain to me when decels in the baby's HR are considered bad vs normal during a contraction?

I was under the impression that decels are normal, and as long as the baby's HR receovers after the ctx, everything is ok. Then I remember one CNM at a birth telling me that whether the decels happened at the beginning vs the end of the ctx made a difference (but I dont remember the details - birth memory haze).

I don't want to interpret medical advice, but sometimes I feel like nurses make a huge deal out of every little decel and I would like to know a little more of what is normal so I can reassure my client. Or also to be able to tell her when there really might be cause for concern.


Jenn, perpetually tired mom to DS(9): DD(4.5): DD(2) :
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#2 of 3 Old 07-20-2005, 03:52 PM
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ok. there are several types of decels - early, late, and variable. early decels correspond with contxs because they are caused by head compression. you usually see these type of decels in early/active labour when the head is really working hard to get that cervix open. they're usually not a problem. late decels are caused by utero-placental insufficiency. basically the baby is oxygen starved during the contx. These ones correspond with the contx as well, but don't begin until the contx is halfway over or near the end - they're like waves and often the more intense the contrx the more severe the decel (pretty scary actually and can be very subtle bc fht might not seem out of range. this is why an occasional good long listen that includes the contrxs is important). Variable decels are pretty self explanitory in that they vary (duh) and usally due to cord compression which by and large corrects itself when a mom gets up and moves around. That was a long answer to your question, but no, early decels (as far as I know keep in mind) are not usually a problem.
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#3 of 3 Old 07-20-2005, 03:56 PM
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Good info! Thanks.
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