New Electronic Fetal Monitoring Infographic Along with Printables of All Infographics!

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Lamaze International has released a new infographic; “Can Good Intentions Backfire in Labor? A closer look at continuous electronic fetal monitoring (EFM). This infographic is suitable for childbirth educators, doulas and birth professionals to use and share with clients and students.

Many birthing people and their families feel that monitoring in the form of continuous EFM (CEFM) during labor means a safer outcome for both the pregnant person and baby.  But as the infographic clearly states, (and as the research shows) since the invention of the continuous EFM, more than 60 years ago, newborn outcomes have not improved and in fact worsened.  CEFM used on normal, healthy, low risk labors does not make things better and can often create a situation that requires action (such as a cesarean birth) when the reality is that all was fine.

EFMInfographic_FINALAs educators, we have a responsibility to the families we work with to share what the evidence shows about continuous fetal monitoring.  Families may be surprised to learn that CEFM is not necessary for a spontaneous labor that is progressing normally and with a baby who is tolerating labor well.  Many of us may cover this topic when we talk about the 4th Healthy Birth Practice – Avoid Interventions that are Not Medically Necessary.  CEFM during a low risk, spontaneous labor is not medically necessary.  Helping families to understand this information and setting them up to have conversations with their health care providers about when CEFM might become necessary is an important discussion to have in childbirth class. Now there is this Lamaze International infographic on CEFM to help you facilitate conversations with your clients and students.

Lamaze International has also listened to the needs of educators and in addition to having the infographics available on a web page, all of the infographics are available as printable 8 1/2″ x 11″ handouts that you can share with families.  Alternately, for versions to laminate or hang in your classroom or office, you can choose to print the jpg versions in the original format. And of course, they will also reside on the Lamaze International Professional website.  Hop on over to check out all the infographics on a variety of topics.

Parents can find the EFM infographic as part of the educational material on the EFM information page on the parent website.

How do you cover the topic of continuous electronic fetal monitoring in your classes?  Will you be likely to use this new infographic as part of your curriculum?  Let us know in the comments section below.

6 Comments

Thanks for another great infog

February 19, 2015 07:00 AM by Deena H. Blumenfeld, ERYT, RPYT, LCCE, FACCE
Thanks for another great infographic to share with my students!

I am so tickled to see they ar

February 19, 2015 07:00 AM by Teri Shilling, MS, LCCE, CD, IBCLC
I am so tickled to see they are now available in handout scale as well as poster. Thank you.

It's a great thing to have thi

February 19, 2015 07:00 AM by Jacqueline Levine, LCCE,FACCE,CD, CLC
It's a great thing to have this new infographic as a handout. I find hard copies and handouts a very effective tool. As this very article says, " we have a responsibility to share what the evidence shows" about CEFM. With that in mind always, I give clients and classes an article from the Journal of Legal Medicine, from Sept. 19 2012,called "Electronic Fetal Monitoring: A Bridge Too Far" written by Thomas P. Sartwelle. It's quite a long article, but I give my classes the intro to the article. It's quite enough to give them a look into some best-evidence info about EFM. I hope others will look it up and use it as well. When we show our clients what docs and their legal advisors are saying to each other, but never quite get around to saying to us...well, we all know the consequences. Here's a quote from the first few paragraphs: "The most common obstetrical procedure in the United States is electronic fetal monitoring (EFM) during labor. Approximately 85% of the 4,000,000 annual births are EFM monitored. EFM is the standard of care in virtually every community. Hospitals have invested multiple millions of dollars in electronic fetal monitoring since its acceptance into clinical practice in the late 1960s. Hospitals and physicians have billed and been paid many millions of dollars for EFM use. Despite its ubiquity and acceptance in daily clinical obstetrical practice, there are and always have been some important, esoteric EFM secrets: its scientific foundation is feeble; inter-observer/intra-observer reliability is poor; the false-positive prediction of fetal distress rate is greater than 99%; it has substantially increased the cesarean section rate with attendant mortality and morbidity; and it failed completely in its initial stated promiseâ??reducing by half the incidence of cerebral palsy (CP), mental retardation (MR), and peri-natal mortality. Any other medical procedure with such an abysmal pedigree would have gone the way of bleeding by medieval barbers. But rather than abandon EFM, medicine elevated it to rock star status. And in the last four decades more babies and mothers have probably suffered harm from EFM than have been helped. Electronic fetal monitoring was also used as a courtroom truncheon by self-designated EFM â??expertsâ?Ł across the United States as they assaulted their supposedly less intelligent colleagues in cerebral palsy and other neurologic birth injury trials. These experts delivered courtroom babies with perfect results, branding their unenlightened colleagues negligent because they failed to recognize the alleged EFM evidence that a child was being asphyxiated in labor. Thus the negligent miscreants sentenced the child to a lifetime of cerebral palsy or other neurologic devastation. The experts made millions of dollars kibitzing as it were. The trial lawyers sponsoring the experts made even more millions of dollars convincing juries that physicians, nurses, and hospitals caused cerebral palsy. It was, and is, junk science. But it continues unabated even today. Strangely, organized medicine stood mute to these assaults, and still does today, allowing EFM to masquerade as science. This strange litigationâ??junk science dance is even more confusing considering that EFM had its origins in the most important and recognized symbol of medicineâ??s reliance on scienceâ??the stethoscope. This article examines EFMâ??s beginning, its history, its rise to ubiquity, and its use today, as well as EFMâ??s intimate connection to cerebral palsy and other birth-related brain maladies. It also examines EFMâ??s use and abuse in birth injury litigation and the international malpractice crisis that EFM spawned. The article explores the reasons why physicians and the public believe in EFM technology in spite of its known flaws, defects, and shortcomings, and why the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) and related worldwide professional organizations have not only failed to curtail EFM use but have actually allowed it to continue in its widespread use." Every single LCCE should have this and other best-evidence info as handouts, along with the great ones from the Lamaze website. The more avenues there are that lead to teaching best-evidence care, the more effective we'll be as educators and the better and healthier our clients will be.

Thanks Lamaze for improving ev

February 23, 2015 07:00 AM by Roxana Valdez, LCCE
Thanks Lamaze for improving everyday our practices as childbirth educator and to provide us with more graphic material to share with more women the importance of being informed. I love this new infographic, cause offers a interesting support to explain than since the invention of the continuous EFM, more than 60 years ago, newborn outcomes have not improved and in fact worsened, wow...60 years and any outcome, this is showing something very clear..

a new infographic our from

February 25, 2015 07:00 AM by Wednesday Wrap Up Feb 25 | Andrea Lythgoe Doula Salt Lake City Utah
a new infographic our from Lamaze, this one on Electronic Fetal Monitoring. Can Good Intentions Backfire in Labor? This link includes access to printables of all the Lamaze Infographics if you would like to make [?]

Thanks for the new infographic

March 4, 2015 07:00 AM by LaToya Murray-Johnson, LCCE
Thanks for the new infographic. Saving it now!

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