Calculated blood loss in severe obstetric hemorrhage and its relation to body mass index

Am J Perinatol. 2012 Aug;29(7):557-60. doi: 10.1055/s-0032-1310528. Epub 2012 Apr 11.


Objective: To evaluate total calculated blood loss at the time of severe obstetric hemorrhage.

Study design: This is a prospective observational study of women with obstetric hemorrhage. Women who received a blood transfusion for hypovolemia and those in which a body mass index (BMI) could be calculated were included. Total blood volume lost was calculated. Blood loss was analyzed in relation to maternal size as reflected in the BMI.

Results: Fourteen hundred forty-three women meeting inclusion criteria delivered at our hospital between March 2002 and June 2006. The median calculated volume of blood lost was 3529 mL, and 93% of women sustained losses ≥3000 mL. The blood loss sufficient to provoke signs and symptoms of hypovolemia was proportional to the woman's BMI.

Conclusion: Women who develop hypovolemia during childbirth have suffered very large losses of blood, and infusion of blood products is required to restore circulation and prevent further morbidity.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Algorithms
  • Blood Loss, Surgical
  • Blood Transfusion / methods
  • Blood Volume
  • Body Mass Index*
  • Cesarean Section
  • Extraction, Obstetrical
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hypovolemia / diagnosis*
  • Hypovolemia / etiology
  • Hypovolemia / therapy
  • Postoperative Hemorrhage / diagnosis*
  • Postoperative Hemorrhage / therapy
  • Postpartum Hemorrhage / diagnosis*
  • Postpartum Hemorrhage / therapy
  • Pregnancy
  • Prospective Studies