Objective: To determine the incidence, indication, association with caesarean section (CS) and outcome of emergency peripartum hysterectomy (EPH) in The Netherlands.
Study design: All 100 Dutch obstetric departments were asked to participate in a prospective nationwide registration of EPH between 1 April 2002 and 1 April 2003. For every case, a form with questions about obstetrical history, current pregnancy and delivery, maternal and neonatal outcome was completed.
Results: Eighty-nine (89%) hospitals participated and registered in total 48 EPH. The estimated incidence of EPH is 0.33/1000 births. The main indication for EPH was placenta accreta (50%), followed by uterine atony (27%). There were two maternal deaths (4%). Severe maternal morbidity included: urinary tract injury 15%, relaparotomy 25%, transfusion >10 units red blood cells 67%, intensive care admission 77%. Both previous CS and CS in the index pregnancy were associated with a significant increased risk of EPH. The number of previous CS was related to an increased risk of placenta accreta, from 0.19% for one previous CS to 9.1% for four or more previous CS.
Conclusion: Emergency peripartum hysterectomy is associated with a high incidence of maternal morbidity and a case fatality rate of 4%. It is significantly related to CS in index or previous pregnancy. Placenta accreta is the most common indication to perform a peripartum hysterectomy.