Within obstetrics, most of the care of low-risk mothers and uncomplicated deliveries are performed by midwives.
About 35% of births are undertaken by an obstetrician, usually for more complex cases or if the baby becomes distressed during labor. Their work includes:
- using instruments to assist delivery – including forceps or a ventouse (vacuum-assisted delivery)
- performing cesarean sections, either as a planned or emergency procedure
Within gynecology procedures include:
- carrying out surgical interventions following miscarriage
- treating abnormal bleeding and polyps
- major surgery for gynecological cancers
- minimal access surgery for problems including endometriosis
Obstetrics and gynecology are concerned with the care of a pregnant woman, her unborn child and the management of diseases specific to women. The speciality combines medicine and surgery.
Most consultants within the speciality work in both obstetrics and gynecology (O&G). Many have a major special interest in a particular area, such as high-risk obstetrics, fertility care or minimal access surgery. A smaller number of consultants work as subspecialists, with all of their work concentrated in a specific area of practice.
This is a speciality, mostly dealing with healthy women, where unexpected challenges can present themselves on a daily basis. Work includes a large number of hands-on procedures, both in obstetrics and gynecology.
In gynecology, patients range from those who have chronic disorders which are not life-threatening (but interfere significantly with quality of life), to those where an acute emergency presentation is the first indication of a gynecological problem.
Gynecology is concerned with the well-being and health of the female reproductive organs and the ability to reproduce. It includes endocrinology, female urology and pelvic malignancy. The speciality spans pediatric and adolescent gynecological problems through to later years.
In obstetrics most women, although pregnant, are otherwise fit and healthy. However, others will have acute or chronic medical problems that complicate their pregnancy and are under the specific care of an obstetrician.