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Objective: To determine if the use of routine episiotomies decreases the rate of severe perineal tears in comparison to selective episiotomies during vaginal delivery. Methods: PubMed and Google Scholar were used to generate a set of random control trials which all had the objective of comparing severe perineal tears in routine compared to selective episiotomies during vaginal delivery. Three trials were reviewed and included in this study. Results: The results of each trial were not all statistically significant in the rate of severe perineal tears when comparing the two interventions. However, a downward trend of third-degree perineal tears amongst the use of selective episiotomies was noted. Conclusion: Heterogeneity amongst each of the trials made it difficult to determine if the use of selective vs. routine episiotomies influenced the rate of severe perineal tears. While a decrease in severe perineal tears is found with selective episiotomies, more research is needed at this time.
Brown H, Trader A. ROUTINE VERSUS SELECTIVE EPISIOTOMIES CAUSING SEVERE PERINEAL TEARS. Posted online December 14, 2020.