Could Hurricane Florence spur a spike in births?

A theory exists that hurricanes such as Florence can prompt an increase in births, The Charlotte Observer reported.

"I'm a nurse, not a meteorologist, but when there's a drop in barometric pressure, it can induce labor, it can cause water to break. So, we know we're going to be really busy this weekend here at the hospital," Susan Pedaline, DNP, MSN, RNC, CNO of Women's Hospital and vice president of maternal-child services for Cone Health in in Greensboro, N.C., told WXIA-TV.

Erika Linden, MSN, RNC-OB, manager of Frederick (Md.) Memorial Hospital's labor and delivery unit, told The Frederick News-Post patient volume in her unit tends to spike when barometric pressure changes.   

Various studies have looked at a potential association between barometric pressure and a spike in births. A 2007 study, published in The International Journal of Gynecology & Obstetrics and cited by The Charlotte Observer,concluded that "low barometric pressure induces rupture of the fetal membranes and delivery."

Last year, hospitals in southern Florida prepared for a spike in births as Hurricane Irma approached.

 

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