Shoulder dystocia: comparison of the ACOG practice bulletin with another national guideline

Am J Perinatol. 2010 Feb;27(2):129-36. doi: 10.1055/s-0029-1224864. Epub 2009 Jun 29.


Our objective was to compare national guidelines regarding shoulder dystocia. Along with the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) practice bulletin on shoulder dystocia, guidelines from England, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand were reviewed. The Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG) guideline agrees with the ACOG definition of shoulder dystocia, but there are variances in the management of suspected macrosomia and resolution of impacted shoulders. How recommendations are categorized differ also. Only 53% (20 of 38) of eligible references are cited by both publications. The two national guidelines on shoulder dystocia have differences and disagreements with each other, raising concerns about how the literature is synthesized and which is more comprehensive.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Birth Injuries / diagnosis
  • Birth Injuries / epidemiology
  • Birth Injuries / etiology*
  • Birth Injuries / prevention & control
  • Brachial Plexus / injuries
  • Cesarean Section
  • Delivery, Obstetric / methods
  • Dystocia / epidemiology*
  • Episiotomy
  • Female
  • Fetal Macrosomia / epidemiology
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Labor, Induced
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic*
  • Pregnancy
  • Risk Factors
  • Shoulder Injuries*
  • Societies, Medical
  • Terminology as Topic