When a woman reaches the end of the ninth month of her pregnancy, she can be physically uncomfortable. Many pregnant women thus find themselves wanting something that can help labor begin. Stripping the membranes is one technique that can be used for that purpose.
What It Is
Stripping the membranes, also known as amniotic membrane sweeping, is a procedure done as a natural means of labor induction. In the procedure, one or two fingers are inserted into the vagina past the cervix. The fingers then are moved in a sweeping motion. This loosens the mucus plug that serves as a barrier between the uterus and the outside of the body. It also loosens the amniotic sac from the uterus. The procedure takes a few minutes and usually feels like a regular vaginal exam.
Stripping the membranes of a pregnant women is believed to work as a form of labor induction because the loosening of the mucus plug and amniotic sac stimulates contractions in the uterus. Although most women experience labor within three days of having the membranes stripped, not all women who have the procedure done go into labor within three days. Furthermore, it is debatable whether the procedure really does much good, considering that many women who go into labor after the procedure might have gone into labor for a reason other than the stripping.
Who Does It
Stripping of the membranes usually is done by a physician. It also is done by midwives, although this is less common. Although it is rare, a woman also can strip her own membranes at home. Regardless of who does the procedure, proper precautions need to be taken in order to prevent infection. Hands need to be washed at a bare minimum before the fingers are inserted into the vagina, and if possible, latex or latex alternative gloves should be used.
Several side effects might arise from the stripping of the membranes, and pregnant women should be aware of them. They include cramping and pain during the procedure. The most serious complication is premature rupture of the amniotic sac.
Stripping of the membranes is not recommended unless the pregnancy is at or over 40 weeks because the due date of a pregnant woman can be inaccurate. If the date is inaccurate and labor is induced, a woman can give birth before the baby is truly fully ready to start life outside of the womb. Most women will go into labor naturally by 42 weeks, so induction via stripping of the membranes might not be medically necessary. A woman considering the procedure should consult with her care provider before proceeding.
How to Strip the Membranes When Pregnant
When a woman has gone passed her due date, she may be ready to begin the labor process. However, she may not...
How to Strip Processed Hair
How to Strip Hair Color at Home; How to Lighten Processed Hair; Comments. Gypsy Jade McKinney Dec 14, 2010. thank you. You...
How to Self Induce Labor at Home
Women whose pregnancies have lasted for 40 weeks or longer might be eager for their baby to be born. The final weeks...
How to Induce Labor at 37 Weeks
Ask your doctor to strip you. Of your membranes that is. ... This is the most effective for women who are already...
How to Glue a Rubber Membrane on a Wood Deck
Rubber membranes are primarily used as an undercoating, ... The termination bar is a metal strip which edges the rubber membrane.