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What is electronic fetal monitoring?

When you go into labor, it is advisable to get to the hospital as quickly as possible. After all, you probably do not want to give birth unassisted at home, in your car or anywhere else. This is because you want to take full advantage of modern medicine.

After you arrive at the hospital, nurses should place you in a triage room. According to Lamaze International, the purpose of this room is to determine the urgency of your situation, including how far along you are. The triage room is also where nurses typically begin electronic fetal monitoring.

Monitoring you and your baby

Electronic fetal monitoring is an ongoing and real-time test that measures your contractions and your baby’s heart rate. Because your newborn experiences increasing stress as your labor proceeds, electronic fetal monitoring allows health care providers to know whether your baby is in potentially life-threatening distress.

Using electronic fetal monitoring

Electronic fetal monitoring is widespread in hospitals and birthing centers across the country, so the use of the test may be a standard operating procedure during your delivery. Still, a growing number of doctors are choosing to use electronic fetal monitoring only during high-risk pregnancies and deliveries.

Filing malpractice claims

The problem, of course, is that it can be easy to miss a high-risk pregnancy or difficult delivery. If doctors assume everything is going fine, they may overlook critical information about your health or your unborn child’s health. Because of the low risk electronic fetal monitoring poses to you and your baby, doctors may insulate themselves from malpractice claims by using it.

Ultimately, though, if you or your baby sustains catastrophic injuries because doctors choose not to use electronic fetal monitoring, you may be eligible for significant financial compensation.