We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is an Amnioinfusion?

Tricia Christensen
By
Updated May 17, 2024
Our promise to you
WiseGeek is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At WiseGeek, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject-matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

Amnioinfusion is an obstetrical technique that may be employed at different stages of labor or pregnancy to address a variety of complications. The procedure adds fluid to the amniotic fluid, and it may do so in a couple of ways. Most often this addition of fluid is indicated when a woman is in labor and meets certain conditions, but there are a few times when it might be employed during pregnancy.

The more accepted recommendations for amnioinfusion are that it be used during end stages of labor. Normally, doctors will consider it if there are variable decelerations of the heartbeat, which might suggest cord compression. Adding extra fluid to the uterus is thought to give greater cushioning and potentially reduce chance of fetal cord compression, which in turn may make heart rate stable or prevent oxygen loss.

Another use of amnioinfusion during labor is suggested when concern exists that the baby will swallow meconium, or in utero waste produced by the fetus. This can cause problems post delivery, and it’s thought that use of extra fluid has a diluting effect on meconium and lowers risk of this occurring. Alternately, some doctors recommend that amnioinfusion, for women with low levels of amniotic fluid (oligohydramnios), is useful during labor and delivery.

Additional recommendations for this procedure exist, though not all are equally endorsed. Some believe that pregnant women with oligohydramnios should have extra fluid placed in the uterine sac prior to labor. Sometimes when women have prematurely ruptured membranes, amnioinfusion may be tried to stabilize uterine environment and avoid pre-term labor.

Exactly how this procedure works may depend on when it takes place. When the uterine sac is not ruptured and the infusion is given earlier in pregnancy, the typical method for getting fluid in would be similar to that used for amniocentesis. In cases where ruptured membranes have occurred and labor is fairly imminent, fluid is given by catheter directly into the uterus.

During labor, amnioinfusion may be undertaken with membrane rupture, since access to the uterus is thus gained. This step is unnecessary if the bag of waters is already broken. Most medical texts strongly recommend that adding extra fluids be performed concurrent with fetal scalp monitoring, though this may already be in place.

Extra fluid infusion is one way that doctors may be able to provide women with a more natural birthing environment. When heart decelerations occur, the natural impulse may be to recommend c-section. Instead, amnioinfusion could be attempted, though too many heart irregularities suggest safer delivery means, such as surgery.

Since this procedure is still not performed everywhere, and has really only been investigated since the 1980s, not all physicians favor it. More importantly, risks of amnioinfusion aren’t fully defined, but medical literature suggests they do exist. Those who may need to undergo this procedure should plan to talk with doctors about risks/benefits and determine the best course based on a physician’s answers about the most current studies.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Tricia Christensen
By Tricia Christensen
With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a WiseGeek contributor, Tricia Christensen is based in Northern California and brings a wealth of knowledge and passion to her writing. Her wide-ranging interests include reading, writing, medicine, art, film, history, politics, ethics, and religion, all of which she incorporates into her informative articles. Tricia is currently working on her first novel.
Discussion Comments
Tricia Christensen
Tricia Christensen
With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a WiseGeek contributor, Tricia...
Learn more
WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.