Delivery Complications

Childbirth is one of the momentous events in life. Nothing is more significant than bringing a new life into the world. Unfortunately, human childbirth is longer, more difficult, and more uncertain than any other species on the planet. Every with modern medical techniques, over 800 women and twice as many babies still die each day during childbirth around the world. There are dozens of well-known obstetrical complications and other things than can and often do go wrong during labor and delivery. Most major birth injuries are caused by adverse events and complications arising in the delivery room.

Most Dangerous Complications

A look at the top 5 most dangerous childbirth and pregnancy complications that pose serious threats to babies.

Amniotic Fluid Embolism

A life threatening condition in which the amniotic fluid enters the mother's blood stream.

Fundal Pressure

A controversial technique in which doctors apply pressure to the abdomen in order to move a baby that has become stuck.

Retained Placenta

If the placenta is not delivered in its entirety, it must be surgically removed in order to prevent complications.

Twin Transfusion

Twin-to-Twin Transfusion Syndrome (TTTS) is typically fatal for twins, but may be treatable with new medical techniques.

History of Childbirth

A look at how women gave birth in the past, and how far we have come.

Shoulder Dystocia

An emergency complication in which the baby’s shoulder gets stuck during vaginal delivery.

Uterine Rupture

An extremely dangerous event where the wall of the uterus fully or partially tears open presenting an immediate threat to the baby.

Umbilical Cord Prolapse

When the umbilical cord drops down into the birth canal in front of the baby and gets dangerously compressed by the baby’s head.

Breech Position

An abnormal presentation of the baby prior to delivery in which the feet are positioned downward instead of the baby’s head.

Cephalopelvic Disproportion

Cephalopelvic disproportion (CPD) is when a baby’s head is too large to fit through the mother’s pelvis, typically necessitating a cesarean delivery. 

Forceps Delivery Trauma

When obstetric forceps are used to facilitate a difficult vaginal delivery there is a very high risk of serious injury to the baby’s head and neck.

Vacuum Extraction Trauma

Excessive or improper use of a vacuum pump extractor during delivery is a common source of trauma and serious birth injuries.

Pitocin Problems

Pitocin is a synthetic hormone widely used to induce and accelerate labor, but it can over-stimulate contractions that are dangerous to the baby.


Another drug used to induce labor that can lead to complications.

Fetal Monitoring Failures

Many birth injuries are linked to failures to properly monitor fetal heart rate and respond to signs of fetal stress during delivery.


Epidurals are the most widely used form of pain relief during labor, but they slow down the delivery process and increase the risk of birth injury.

Cervical Dystonia in Infants

Dystonia is a neurological disorder characterized by involuntary muscle contractions.

Episiotomy Complications

Episiotomies are a procedure done during vaginal delivery. They are only medically recommended in emergency situations.

C-Section Delivery

When complications arise during labor and delivery, a prompt emergency C-Section can potentially avoid any harm to the baby.

History of Cesarean Delivery

C-Sections have evolved over 2000 years of human history into one of the most beneficial procedures in modern medicine.


Vaginal Delivery After C-Section (VBAC) is becoming increasingly popular despite inherent risks of uterine rupture.

Meconium Aspiration

Neonatal hazard which occurs when the baby inhales meconium (fetal poop) into their lungs prior to birth creating major health risks.


Persistent Pulmonary Hypertension in a Newborn (PPHN) a rare but very serious circulatory conditions that can cause neonatal breathing difficulties.

Neonatal Resuscitation

Newborns who are not breathing on their own at birth require medical intervention in the form of neonatal resuscitation.

Herpes in Newborns

The herpes infection is usually transferred from mother to child during delivery when the baby passes through the birth canal.

Subconjunctival Hemorrhage in Newborns

A subconjunctival hemorrhage is essentially a burst blood vessel in your eye. It is one of several different disorders collectively known as “red-eye.”