Impact of Peanut Ball Device on the Duration of Active Labor: A Randomized Control Trial

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Abstract

Objective

To evaluate whether the use of a peanut ball device shortens the duration of active labor in nulliparas.

Study Design

Single-site, nonblinded randomized trial in nulliparous women admitted for labor or labor induction. English-speaking women > 18 years of age with singleton pregnancies were enrolled. Participants were randomized to the use of peanut ball or usual care upon reaching the active phase of labor (≥ 6 cm cervical dilation) with an epidural. Primary outcome was rate of cervical dilation. Secondary outcomes were rates of cesarean delivery and fetal presentation at time of full dilation or delivery.

Results

Ninety-six patients enrolled; 63 reached full cervical dilation. There was no statistically significant difference in rates of cervical dilation (0.98cm/h vs. 0.79cm/h, p = 0.27) or length of labor (315 minutes vs. 387 minutes, p = 0.14) between the groups. There was no difference in the rates of cesarean delivery (33% vs. 35%, p = 0.8) or occiput posterior presentation. (28% vs. 9%, p = 0.09). Among the subgroup who had labor arrest, fewer patients using the peanut ball experienced arrest of dilation; this approached but did not reach statistical significance (30% vs. 73% p = 0.05).

Conclusion

Use of the peanut ball does not significantly increase rates of cervical dilation or decrease time in active labor.

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