Continuous Labour Support

Systematic Review


Among nulliparous women, does continuous labour support versus usual care affect the rates of cesarean section, assisted vaginal birth, epidural analgesia, or augmentation of labour with oxytocin?


In the North American setting, continuous labour support does not show evidence of an association with reduced interventions in labour including cesarean section, assisted vaginal delivery, use of epidural analgesia, or oxytocin augmentation. In settings where women do not have access to labour support other than a doula, continuous support by a doula is associated with a significant reduction in labour interventions. Labour support may be of value in North American settings when use of epidural analgesia can be delayed or avoided.