A blueprint for obstetric critical care

Gerda G. Zeeman, George D. Wendel, F. Gary Cunningham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

88 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study was to describe our 2-year experience with 483 critically ill periparrum women and to propose a blueprint for obstetric critical care. STUDY DESIGN: This was a prospective study to evaluate all admissions to the Obstetric Intermediate Care Unit and obstetric admissions to medical/surgical intensive care units. Our findings are followed by general recommendations for the organization of obstetric critical care. RESULTS: Almost two thirds of the women had obstetric complications that included pregnancy-associated hypertension and obstetric hemorrhage. Medical disorders were most common in the other one third of the women. CONCLUSION: An Obstetric Intermediate Care Unit allows for the continuation of care by obstetricians and results in fewer transfers to medical/surgical intensive care units. Patient treatment depends on hospital size and available resources. In most tertiary centers, the critically ill pregnant woman is best cared for by obstetricians in an Obstetric Intermediate Care Unit. In smaller hospitals, transfer to a medical or surgical intensive care unit may be preferable.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)532-536
Number of pages5
JournalAmerican journal of obstetrics and gynecology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2003


  • Obstetric critical care

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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