First aid for obstetric haemorrhage: the pilot study of the non-pneumatic anti-shock garment in Egypt


Dr S Miller, Women's Global Health Imperative, Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproductive Sciences, University of California, San Francisco, 50 Beale Street, Suite 1200, San Francisco, CA 94105, USA. Email;


Objective  To compare the effect of non-pneumatic anti-shock garment (NASG) on blood loss from obstetric haemorrhage with standard management of obstetric haemorrhage.

Design  Observational study of consecutive obstetric haemorrhage cases before and after introduction of the NASG.

Setting  Four tertiary care maternity facilities in Egypt.

Sample  The sample consisted of women with obstetric haemorrhage and signs of shock and the entry criteria were: >750 mL of blood loss and either pulse of >100 beats per minute or systolic blood pressure of <100 mmHg. A total of 158 women were in the preintervention group and 206 in the postintervention group.

Methods  All the women with haemorrhage meeting the eligibility criteria were treated according to the standard protocol for 4 months (May–August 2004); blood loss was measured and recorded. The NASG was then introduced, and all the women meeting the eligibility criteria were treated according to the standard haemorrhage protocol plus the NASG for 4 months (September–December 2004).

Main outcome measures  Measured blood loss collected in a closed-end, graduated, plastic, under buttocks collection drape.

Results  Median measured blood loss in the drape following study entry was 50% lower in those treated with the NASG (250 versus 500 mL, P < 0.001). There was also a non-statistically significant decrease in morbidity and mortality.

Conclusions  This is the first comparative study of the NASG with a standard obstetric haemorrhage treatment protocol. The NASG shows promise for management of obstetric haemorrhage, particularly in lower resource settings. Larger studies will be needed to determine if the NASG contributes to statistically significant decreases in morbidity and mortality.