Full Birth Statistics (2009) for University Hospital Galway

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All mothers First time mothers 2nd & subsequent time mothers
No. of mothers (whose babies > 500g) 3,460 1,421 2,039
No. of babies born > 500g 3,520 1,451 2,069
Onset of Labour
% spontaneous onset of labour 55.5% 56.2% 55.0%
% labour induced 26.6% 31.4% 23.3%
% elective caesarean birth 13.4% 7.6% 17.5%
% pre-labour emergency caesarean birth 4.9% 5.3% 4.6%
Mode of Birth
% spontaneous vaginal birth 54.1% 37.4% 65.8%
% ventouse/vacuum birth 12.7% 22.7% 5.8%
% forceps birth 4.7% 9.5% 1.3%
% total instrumental birth 17.4% 32.2% 7.1%
% unplanned/emergency caesarean birth in labour 9.8% 17.2% 4.7%
% all emergency caesarean birth
% total caesarean birth 28.1% 30.0% 26.7%
Induction Details (% of women whose labour was induced)
% by prostaglandin (PG) only 32.8% 35.2% 30.5%
% by artificial rupture of membranes (ARM) only 13.6% 7.6% 19.2%
% by syntocinon only (if previous SROM) 7.6% 10.8% 4.6%
% by combination: PG + ARM 11.8% 8.7% 14.7%
% by combination: PG + ARM + syntocinon 15.0% 22.6% 7.8%
% by combination: ARM + syntocinon 19.2% 15.0% 23.2%
% by other method
Modes of birth following induction (% of women whose labour was induced)
% spontaneous vaginal birth
% ventouse/vacuum birth
% forceps birth
% caesarean birth
In spontaneous labour (% of women who went into labour spontaneously)
% artificial rupture of membranes (ARM) 33.3% 25.3% 39.0%
% syntocinon 19.9% 33.2% 10.4%
% spontaneous vaginal birth
"Normal Birth"
Spontaneous onset of labour, no artificial rupture of membranes, no augmentation, no epidural, no episiotomy, spontaneous vaginal birth.
Normal birth as % of all women attending unit
Normal birth % of women who went into labour spontaneously
Breech Babies
% of breech babies born vaginally 13.9%
% of breech babies born by caesarean birth 86.1%
Twin births
% of twin babies born vaginally 28.8%
% of twin babies born by caesarean birth 71.2%
VBAC (Vaginal Birth After Caesarean)
VBAC as % of all mothers who gave birth in the unit 4.3%
% of mothers with one prior caesarean birth who opted to labour 48.4%
% of mothers with one prior caesarean birth who had a VBAC 36.4%
% VBAC rate of those who opted to labour 75.3%
Fetal Monitoring
Approx. 20 min admission trace 25.4%
Intermittent auscultation during labour 12.5%
Continuous electronic fetal monitoring – external > 1hr during labour 60.1%
Continuous electronic fetal monitoring – internal (fetal scalp electrode) > 1 hr during labour 1.9%
Fetal blood sampling 4.5% 8.2% 1.9%
Pharmacological Pain relief
% use of entonox (gas & air) 20.8% 13.2% 26.1%
% use of epidural / spinal anaesthesia (induced/labouring women only – excluding pre-labour caesarean section) 47.5% 61.9% 37.4%
% use of pethidine / diamorphine 2.3% 3.0% 1.8%
Episiotomy / Tears
% intact perineum 15.5% 5.4% 22.5%
% 1st degree tears 10.4% 5.3% 13.9%
% 2nd degree tears 20.0% 15.9% 22.9%
% 3rd degree tears 1.0% 1.6% 0.6%
% 4th degree tears
% episiotomy – spontaneous vaginal birth
% episiotomy - instrumental birth
% total episiotomy
3rd Stage
% physiological 3rd stage of labour 1.0% 0.7% 1.2%
% actively managed 3rd stage of labour 70.0% 69.0% 70.8%
Breastfeeding
% initiated breastfeeding within 1 hr of birth 59.9% 69.2% 53.5%
% exclusively breastfeeding on discharge 31.7%
Babies born outside of the unit
% born before arrival (booked for hospital birth but born before reaching hospital) 0.3% 0.2% 0.4%
% births at home with hospital community midwives
Gestational age at birth (from last menstrual period date or by ultrasound scan):
≤ 370 weeks 6.9% 8.2% 6.0%
371 – 380 weeks 5.3% 5.3% 5.2%
381 – 390 weeks 15.9% 12.4% 18.4%
391 – 400 weeks 24.2% 22.7% 25.4%
401 – 410 weeks 28.5% 28.1% 28.7%
411 – 420 weeks 19.2% 23.4% 16.2%
421 – 430 weeks
431 – 440 weeks
≥ 441 weeks

All % data provided here has been calculated by 'bump2babe: The Consumer Guide to Maternity Services in Ireland'. Maternity units provided bump2babe with numbers of mothers for the various categories and we calculated the percentage rates based on the numbers of mothers who gave birth in the unit. We are not responsible for any inaccuracies in the figures given to bump2babe. The guide has highlighted and raised concerns about differences in data recording and reporting abilities in the 22 maternity units in Ireland.