What is the prevalence of postpartum infections?

Updated: Oct 11, 2019
  • Author: Andy W Wong, MD; Chief Editor: Bruce M Lo, MD, MBA, CPE, RDMS, FACEP, FAAEM, FACHE  more...
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In a study by Yokoe et al in 2001, 5.5% of vaginal deliveries and 7.4% of cesarean deliveries resulted in a postpartum infection. [2] The overall postpartum infection rate was 6.0%. Endometritis accounted for nearly half of the infections in patients following cesarean delivery (3.4% of cesarean deliveries). Mastitis and urinary tract infections together accounted for 5% of vaginal deliveries. [2]

A study by Bauer et al indicated that in the United States from 1998 to 2008, of approximately 45 million hospitalizations for delivery, sepsis was a complication in 1 out of every 3333 deliveries. The investigators also found that during the study period, the risk for severe sepsis (1:10,823 deliveries) and sepsis-related death (1:105,263 deliveries) increased. [9]

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