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Published online by Cambridge University Press:  01 February 2007

Academic Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Imperial College London, Faculty of Medicine, Chelsea and Westminster Hospital, London
Academic Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Imperial College London, Faculty of Medicine, Chelsea and Westminster Hospital, London
Professor Philip J Steer, Academic Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Imperial College London, Faculty of Medicine, Chelsea and Westminster Hospital, 369 Fulham Road, London SW10 9NH


In this review, we are concerned primarily with pyrexia (hyperthermia; increased maternal temperature in labour) as hypothermia is rare and usually iatrogenic (as in hypothermia for cardiac bypass surgery). We start by reviewing the factors determining maternal temperature, and how it can be measured. We move on to the effects of the commonest cause of maternal pyrexia in labour in modern obstetric practice in developed countries, epidural anaesthesia. We then discuss the most feared cause of maternal pyrexia in labour, chorioamnionitis.

Research Article
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2007

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