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What can my doctor for a fetal heart rate that isn't normal?

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If your baby’s heart rate is not what it should be, your doctor may try several things including:

If these steps don’t return your baby’s heart rate to normal, you may need to deliver him right away. If your cervix is completely open, your doctor may use a tool called forceps or a special vacuum to pull the baby out instead of waiting for your contractions to push him out. Otherwise, you’ll have the baby by C-section.

  • Changing your positions to move the baby
  • Giving you fluids through an IV
  • Having you breathe extra oxygen
  • Relaxing your uterus with medicine to slow contractions
  • Giving you other drugs

From: Fetal Heart Rate Monitoring: What to Expect WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by Nivin Todd on December 20, 2017

Medically Reviewed on 12/20/2017

SOURCES:

American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists: “Fetal heart rate monitoring during labor,” “Special tests for monitoring fetal health.”

Johns Hopkins Medicine: “Fetal heart monitoring.”

American Academy of Family Physicians: “Monitoring baby’s heart rate during labor.”

American Family Physician : “Interpretation of the electronic fetal heart rate during labor.”

Reviewed by Nivin Todd on December 20, 2017

SOURCES:

American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists: “Fetal heart rate monitoring during labor,” “Special tests for monitoring fetal health.”

Johns Hopkins Medicine: “Fetal heart monitoring.”

American Academy of Family Physicians: “Monitoring baby’s heart rate during labor.”

American Family Physician : “Interpretation of the electronic fetal heart rate during labor.”

Reviewed by Nivin Todd on December 20, 2017

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THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

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