Preterm birth is one of the most devastating problems facing obstetrics today. Despite all of the available sophisticated research and therapeutic technology, the preterm birth rate has remained the same for the last 40 years. One birth in 10 occurs prematurely. Preterm labor manifests itself in a variety of ways. It is essential to promptly differentiate true preterm labor from preterm contractions or other conditions that present with similar symptoms. True preterm labor requires prompt clinical intervention in the obstetric triage setting.