open access

Vol 90, No 8 (2019)
REVIEW PAPERS Obstetrics
Published online: 2019-08-30
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Pregnant surgeon — assessment of potential harm to the woman and her unborn child

Aleksandra Szczesna, Kinga Grzelak, Monika Bieniasz, Joanna Kacperczyk-Bartnik, Agnieszka Dobrowolska-Redo, Pawel Bartnik, Julia Zareba-Szczudlik, Ewa Romejko-Wolniewicz
DOI: 10.5603/GP.2019.0081
·
Pubmed: 31482551
·
Ginekol Pol 2019;90(8):470-474.

open access

Vol 90, No 8 (2019)
REVIEW PAPERS Obstetrics
Published online: 2019-08-30

Abstract

Although most countries developed regulations concerning pregnant women at work, they are not strictly adjusted for every profession. In the European countries directives prevent pregnant women from working during night shifts, but apart from a vague paragraph about avoiding hazardous agents, there are no guidelines specific for pregnant surgeons. The aim of the study was to analyse the risks and consequences of working in the operating theatre during pregnancy. An in-depth analysis of available literature, laws and regulations concerning health and safety of pregnant surgeons was performed. Not only they are surgeons exposed to radiation and infectious agents like any other physicians, but they also face the risk of strenuous physical activity affecting their pregnancy. The unpredictability of this occupation, prolonged hours and stress associated with work can all affect the future mother and her child. The available research on potential risks for pregnant women performing surgical activities named such consequences as premature birth, miscarriage, foetal growth retardation, hypertensive disorders and infertility. There are no unanimous guidelines for pregnant surgeons on how long and to which extent they should work. The key is to maintain a balance between limiting the likelihood of pregnancy complications and respecting women’s voluntary wish to continue professional development.

Abstract

Although most countries developed regulations concerning pregnant women at work, they are not strictly adjusted for every profession. In the European countries directives prevent pregnant women from working during night shifts, but apart from a vague paragraph about avoiding hazardous agents, there are no guidelines specific for pregnant surgeons. The aim of the study was to analyse the risks and consequences of working in the operating theatre during pregnancy. An in-depth analysis of available literature, laws and regulations concerning health and safety of pregnant surgeons was performed. Not only they are surgeons exposed to radiation and infectious agents like any other physicians, but they also face the risk of strenuous physical activity affecting their pregnancy. The unpredictability of this occupation, prolonged hours and stress associated with work can all affect the future mother and her child. The available research on potential risks for pregnant women performing surgical activities named such consequences as premature birth, miscarriage, foetal growth retardation, hypertensive disorders and infertility. There are no unanimous guidelines for pregnant surgeons on how long and to which extent they should work. The key is to maintain a balance between limiting the likelihood of pregnancy complications and respecting women’s voluntary wish to continue professional development.

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Keywords

fetal development; pregnancy; reproductive behaviour; surgeons; surgery

About this article
Title

Pregnant surgeon — assessment of potential harm to the woman and her unborn child

Journal

Ginekologia Polska

Issue

Vol 90, No 8 (2019)

Pages

470-474

Published online

2019-08-30

DOI

10.5603/GP.2019.0081

Pubmed

31482551

Bibliographic record

Ginekol Pol 2019;90(8):470-474.

Keywords

fetal development
pregnancy
reproductive behaviour
surgeons
surgery

Authors

Aleksandra Szczesna
Kinga Grzelak
Monika Bieniasz
Joanna Kacperczyk-Bartnik
Agnieszka Dobrowolska-Redo
Pawel Bartnik
Julia Zareba-Szczudlik
Ewa Romejko-Wolniewicz

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