A foley catheter can be used in an induction of labor, however, it’s use is not common practice. The foley catheter method of induction may be more desirable to some women, however, the benefits and risks should be assessed by each woman individually.
What is a foley catheter?
A foley catheter is a type of urinary catheter used to remove urine from the bladder. The catheter was not created with the intent to be used in labor induction, however, has served this purpose for many women. The foley catheter consists of a small thin tube with a balloon end that can be either inflated or deflated.
How is a foley catheter used?
The foley catheter is inserted in it’s deflated state, through the woman’s cervix by her caregiver, and is placed between the lower segment of the woman’s uterus and the amniotic sac. The balloon end is then inflated with a saline solution and is left in place.
What are some reasons a foley catheter may be needed?
The goal of a foley catheter is to manually dilate the cervix. This manual dilation may trigger labor, or simply make the woman’s cervix more receptive to other induction methods such as pitocin or cervidil. In cases where induction is considered necessary, this may be helpful in achieving that goal without the use of a surgical delivery.
What are the advantages of a foley catheter?
A foley catheter is seen as a more natural approach to induction. No medications are required, and no monitors are necessary during it’s administration. If the woman becomes uncomfortable or changes her mind, it can be removed. Upon removal, she may choose to go home and wait it out, or she may proceed with other labor induction methods.
What are the disadvantages of a foley catheter?
Some physicians may want to monitor the baby’s heart rate before, during or after the administration of the foley catheter to monitor for fetal distress. Fetal distress, however, is very unlikely to occur as a result of a foley catheter placement.
“What Is a Foley Catheter Induction of Labor?” Pregnancy Week by Week Calendar Pregnancy Symptoms and Pregnancy Test. Web. 19 Oct. 2010.
“Foley Catheter.” 19 Oct. 2010. Web. 19 Oct. 2010.