Prolonged labor can be harmful to maternal and fetal health. Few
medical interventions are known to shorten labor duration.
muscle performance is known to be improved by glucose supplementation,
the researchers tested whether adding glucose to the intravenous
hydration solution women receive during labor could accelerate labor.
‘Glucose supplementation significantly reduces the total length of labor without increasing the rate of complication.’
In a study to be presented in the oral concurrent
session, at the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine's
annual meeting, The Pregnancy Meeting™, researchers with the Université
de Sherbrooke in Sherbrooke, Quebec, Canada will present their findings
in a study titled, 'Reduction of total labor length through the addition
of parenteral dextrose solution in induction of labor in nulliparous:
results of DEXTRONS prospective randomized controlled trial'.
investigated the use of glucose to shorten induced labor in nulliparous
(first time giving birth). The primary outcome studied was the total
length of active labor.
200 pregnant women were randomly assigned to receive either a
standard hydration solution containing salt and water or a solution
containing glucose, salt and water.
Josianne Pare, with the Department of Obstetrics &
Gynecology at the University of Sherbrooke and the presenter of the
research at the SMFM annual meeting, explained, "We found that the
median duration of labor was 76 minutes shorter in the group of women
receiving glucose. There was no difference in the mode of delivery
(cesarean section, forceps, etc.), or the neonatal well-being measures."
Pare continued, "Glucose supplementation therefore significantly
reduces the total length of labor without increasing the rate of
complication. This is great news for women experiencing induced labor."
The researchers concluded that, given the low-cost and safety of
this intervention, glucose should be the solute of choice during labor.