Archives of Gynecology and Obstetrics

, Volume 289, Issue 3, pp 555–567

Medical prevention and treatment of postpartum hemorrhage: a comparison of different guidelines

Maternal-Fetal Medicine

DOI: 10.1007/s00404-013-3016-4

Cite this article as:
Bohlmann, M.K. & Rath, W. Arch Gynecol Obstet (2014) 289: 555. doi:10.1007/s00404-013-3016-4



Postpartum hemorrhage (PPH) remains a common cause of maternal mortality worldwide, mainly caused by uterine atony. Medical intervention plays an important part in prevention and therapies of PPH. Prophylactic interventions include the use of uterotonic drugs. We elaborated the consistency of national and international guidelines on those medical approaches.

Materials and methods

Medical approaches in PPH were extracted from recent publications. Furthermore, the current guidelines of the World Health Organization, the FIGO and of the American, British, Canadian and German Societies of Obstetricians and Gynecologists on PPH were analyzed.


Oxytocin is considered as therapy of first choice. However, the examined guidelines fail to give unequivocal recommendations on further uterotonics in PPH, which may partially be attributed to differing publication dates of the guidelines.


International guidelines on PPH are characterized by differing recommendations. However, recent publications suggest that adhering to local guidelines significantly reduces the prevalence of severe PPH.


Postpartum hemorrhageMedical preventionTreatmentUterotonicsInternational guidelines



American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists


German Society for Gynecology and Obstetrics


Fédération Internationale de Gynécologie et d’ Obstétrique


Postpartum hemorrhage


Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists


Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada


World Health Organization

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Obstetrics and GynecologyUniversity Hospital of Schleswig-HolsteinLübeckGermany
  2. 2.Division of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Faculty of MedicineUniversity Hospital AachenAachenGermany