Abstract

The evolution in fetal intrapartum monitoring is expressed by waveform analysis of the foetal electrocardiogram (FECG) from physiological signal processing, in several European and American Clinics the last 20 years. The system ability of the ST analysis (STAN) technology of the FECG concentrates some advantages: It confirmed an incidence of metabolic acidocis (0.64%) and moderate / severe encephalopathy, it revealed an improvement of the Apgar score and the need for intensive care and neonatal encephalopathy using ST information in addition to CTG. ST analysis presents continuous on line information contrary to other techniques as foetal blood sampling for pH analysis. It reduces the operative delivery rates for foetal distress and the incidence of metabolic acidosis with a sensitivity of 67.68% and a specificity of 82.60% as outcome from a 16 clinical studies review. Also the interobserver agreement for ST analysis was higher than for CTG alone. Nevertheless, this will get improved more by the appropriate education and correct interpretation of STAN findings.

Key words: fetal ECG; intrapartum monitoring; ST wave.