Obstetric practice and outcome of pregnancy in Cardiff residents 1965-73.Br Med J 1976; 1 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.1.6012.735 (Published 27 March 1976) Cite this as: Br Med J 1976;1:735
- I Chalmers,
- J E Zlosnik,
- K A Johns,
- H Campbell
Trends in management and outcome of pregnancy in Cardiff residents from 1965 to 1973 were reviewed. The mean age and parity of parturients fell. Hospital delivery became almost universal, monitoring the fetus during pregnancy was introduced, and induction and acceleration of labour became commonplace. These developments were not associated with any striking change in either the total perinatal death rate or the timing or cause of perinatal death. Possibly a real change in perinatal mortality between 1965 and 1973 was masked by random fluctuation of small numbers, or possibly factors peculiar to the Cardiff population prevented a decrease in perinatal mortality that would otherwise have resulted from improved medical care. Only by large-scale randomised trials can the true value of induction and other medical developments be assessed.