The Role of Postnatal X-Ray Pelvimetry After Caesarean Section in the Management of Subsequent Delivery

Br J Obstet Gynaecol. 1991 Jul;98(7):716-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1471-0528.1991.tb13462.x.


The purpose of this study was to investigate the influence of postnatal x-ray pelvimetry after caesarean section on the management of the subsequent pregnancy. The case records of 331 women delivered by casearean section in their first pregnancy were reviewed. By standard radiological criteria, the pelvis was considered to be inadequate in 248 (75%) of them and adequate in 83 (25%). Of the women with a radiologically inadequate pelvis, 172 underwent an elective caesarean section. Seventy-six were allowed vaginal delivery: 51 of these women delivered vaginally and 25 required an emergency caesarean section. Of the women with a radiologically adequate pelvis, 61 achieved a vaginal delivery and 22 were delivered by caesarean section. All of the three cases of uterine rupture occurred in women with a radiologically adequate pelvis. This study suggests that x-ray pelvimetry is not a good predictor of the outcome of a trial of vaginal delivery. We conclude that the practice of routine postnatal pelvimetry should be abandoned.

MeSH terms

  • Birth Weight
  • Cesarean Section*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Pelvimetry / methods*
  • Pelvis / anatomy & histology
  • Pelvis / diagnostic imaging*
  • Postnatal Care
  • Pregnancy
  • Radiography
  • Trial of Labor
  • Vaginal Birth after Cesarean*