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Uterine electrical activity as predictor of preterm birth in women with preterm contractions

      Abstract

      Objective: To estimate the risk of preterm birth in women admitted to the tertiary maternity hospital for preterm contractions by measuring electrical uterine activity. Study design: The study included 47 patients with contractions between the 25th and 35th week of gestation and additional risk factors for preterm delivery. Uterine electrical activity was recorded using bipolar electrodes placed on the abdominal surface. A logistic model with the electromyographic and obstetric data was built, preterm delivery before 37th week of gestation being the outcome measure. Results: Seventeen patients (36%) delivered before term. Logistic regression model suggested only the intensity of electrical uterine activity and woman’s body weight to be significant predictors of preterm delivery, with high values related to preterm birth. They predict preterm delivery with the sensitivity of 47% and specificity of 90%. Conclusion: We propose uterine EMG as a simple, non-invasive means to estimate the risk of preterm birth in a high-risk population with multiple risk factors present.

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