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A Review of the 2008 NICHD Research Planning Workshop: Recommendations for Fetal Heart Rate Terminology and Interpretation


Clinical Obstetrics & Gynecology:
doi: 10.1097/GRF.0b013e31820a015b
Intrapartum Fetal Heart Rate Monitoring

In 1995 and 1996, the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) convened a panel of experts in electronic fetal monitoring with the goal of reaching consensus on a set of standardized, unambiguous definitions for fetal heart rate tracings. In 2008, the Eunice Kennedy Shriver NICHD, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, and the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine sponsored a second research planning workshop to review and clarify the 1997 definitions, to propose a standard classification system for fetal heart rate tracings, to introduce, in consensus form, key concepts of intrapartum fetal heart rate interpretation and to make recommendations for future research. This article summarizes the proposals and recommendations of the 2008 NICHD Research Planning Workshop.

Author Information

*Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, Texas

CHLA-USC Institute for Maternal Fetal Health, University of Southern California, Children's Hospital Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California

Correspondence: Gary D.V. Hankins, MD, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, TX. e-mail:

© 2011 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.