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Preventing Maternal Death: 10 Clinical Diamonds

Clark, Steven L. MD; Hankins, Gary D. V. MD

doi: 10.1097/AOG.0b013e3182411907
Current Commentary

The death of a mother during or after childbirth is one of the most tragic events in medicine. We have identified 10 specific recurrent errors that account for a disproportionate share of maternal deaths, primarily related to pulmonary embolism, severe preeclampsia, cardiac disease, and postpartum hemorrhage. Attention to these principles and the development and adoption of local or regional clinical protocols that address these issues will help reduce the likelihood and effect of error and of maternal mortality.

Adherence to 10 basic rules reduces the risk of maternal mortality.

From the Hospital Corporation of America, Nashville, Tennessee; and the University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, Texas.

Corresponding author: Steven L. Clark, MD, 217 Melrose Road, PO Box 404, Twin Bridges, MT 59754; e-mail:

Financial Disclosure The authors did not report any potential conflicts of interest.

© 2012 by The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.