5 Fast Facts Friday #2

Welcome to the second edition of 5F³!  This time, we’re back with more Paramedic facts 2 about: Complications of Pregnancy

  1. Fetal heart rate should typically be between 120-160 bpm.  It’s okay if the rate varies by 15 bpm in either direction.
  2. Fetal heart rate < 120 bpm is considered bradycardia if sustained for longer than 5 minutes.  This is most commonly caused by fetal hypoxia.  If the patient is in active labor, look for signs of umbilical cord prolapse!
  3. Fetal heart rate > 160 bpm is considered tachycardia if sustained for longer than 10 minutes.  Often this is caused by maternal fever or sepsis.
  4. Maternal infection is the most prevalent cause of pre-term labor.
  5. Decreased fetal movement often indicates fetal hypoxia.

Stay tuned this week for a post all about tocolytics and their use in the prehospital setting!

Thanks for reading!  If you have questions, comments, or suggestions, please let me know by visiting my contact page.   I am always looking for YOUR input!  Also please take this time to subscribe and share this blog with your colleagues below.


Pittman CS. FP-C Exam Prep Course Student Guide. 2015.

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