Summary. We conducted a survey of French obstetricians to document their attitudes towards routine ultrasound, intrapartum fetal monitoring and beta-mimetics in 1987. A questionnaire was sent to 582 obstetricians or gynaecologists who were members of two French medical associations. The response rate was 85%. Of the respondents 92% prescribed two or three routine ultrasound examinations: only one doctor did not use electronic fetal monitoring and 99% of the respondents prescribed beta-mimetics to prevent preterm delivery. Some obstetricians reported a decrease in their use of ultrasound and more dramatically in the use of beta-mimetics. Side-effects were reported to be the major reason for the change in beta-mimetic use. Obstetricians who read English language journals were more likely to have reduced their use of ultrasound and beta-mimetics than those who read only French language journals.