Welcome to the division of Obstetric Anesthesiology at OU-Health. Our care-team model of physician-anesthesiologists paired with resident-physicians and CRNAs strive together to provide exceptional maternal care and continually ensure to make the birthing experience as safe and as satisfactory as possible for all the patients. We provide dedicated in-house obstetric-anesthesia services available immediately for all women on the labor and delivery unit 24-hours a day, 365-days a year. This exclusive coverage ensures prompt care for all patients and minimizes delay in providing timely pain-relief and emergency care for laboring women.
Our team is committed in providing excellent, safe, and evidence-based patient care and create a robust foundation of knowledge and clinical experience for the medical students and residents. All the faculty members of the division are experienced in all aspects of obstetric anesthesia practice.
Working in collaboration with one of the largest groups of obstetricians and maternal-fetal-medicine physicians in the state, our team routinely provides care for high-risk pregnancies with complex medical problems with approximately 3,700 deliveries annually. OU-Health is a Level-3 regional referral center in the state and provides the highest level of neonatal care in the state.
Our team meets twice daily with the rest of the obstetric-care team to discuss every patient on the labor and delivery unit to ensure individualized, well-organized, and comprehensive care for all patients. Our team is also involved in multidisciplinary team meetings to coordinate care for high-risk patients. Our division has developed protocols for focused obstetric-anesthesia consultation for all high-risk pregnancies prior to delivery to ensure appropriate plan of care, communication, and reliable quality of care.
In addition to low-risk pregnancies, our patient-population includes numerous high-risk pregnancies including those with cardiac diseases (like valvular lesions, cardiomyopathy, congestive cardiac failure), pulmonary diseases (like pulmonary hypertension, severe COPD, asthma), coagulation disorders, morbid obesity, patients on chronic pain medications and substance abuse. Our team provides on-site anesthesia services for the broadest range of diagnostic and therapeutic tools for complicated pregnancies anywhere in the state. These include fetal transfusion, fetal stents, PUBS (Percutaneous Umbilical cord Blood Sampling), EXIT (Ex-utero Intrapartum Treatment) procedures, transvaginal or transabdominal cerclage.
Our division closely collaborates with the obstetric and nursing leaderships and has developed special safety protocols to manage maternal complications such as hemorrhage, preeclampsia, and morbid obesity. The faculty have also worked meticulously with their colleagues in maternal-fetal medicine, gynecologic oncology, interventional radiology, and transfusion medicine to develop a clinical care pathway for patients with placenta accreta spectrum (PAS). This a high-risk type of Cesaeran delivery prone for significant maternal morbidity and mortality and necessitates intense collaboration between specialties to keep mother and baby safe and healthy. The division faculty is involved in continually educating and training of team members to manage acute and unexpected maternal complications that may occur during labor, delivery and/or surgical procedure.
Education and Research:
The division is associated with a ACGME-accredited Anesthesiology residency program and the OU- College of Medicine MD program. It has a strong commitment to resident and medical student education. The anesthesiology residents are an integral part of the obstetric anesthesia division and start their rotation in the CA-1 year. They complete a senior rotation during the CA-2 year, and an advanced elective is available to CA-3 residents. The volume and wide variety of patient exposure enables the residents to become proficient in epidural anesthesia, spinal anesthesia, and combined spinal-epidural anesthesia. The core curriculum is guided by six competency areas: Patient Care, Medical Knowledge, Practice-Based Learning and Improvement, Interpersonal and Communication Skills, Professionalism, and Systems-Based Practice. In addition to mastering the fundamentals, residents are encouraged to pursue research ambitions, conduct QI projects, and present cases at national meetings. The division has trained anesthesiology residents for more than 25 years and has been instrumental in maintaining ACGME-accreditation of the residency program since its inception in 1994.
The division is actively involved in the education and training of the rotating medical students in their third and fourth years. They have an organized learning course structure including lectures, quizzes, and hands-on clinical experience. The division has been an attracted several fourth-year medical students as their elective rotation.
When you are admitted in the Labor & Delivery Unit at OU-Health, a member of the obstetric-anesthesia team will meet with you and review your medical history. This this initial meeting will help our team to learn about your goals for labor and delivery experience and initiate a plan of care tailored to your goals and any medical condition. It also gives you an opportunity to ask your questions about different options of pain control during labor. Your decisions for pain control will always be respected and the anesthesia team is available for your needs. Our goal is to provide you with an unparalleled birthing experience on this joyous occasion.
If you have a special medical condition or if you have any questions regarding your anesthetic care during labor, your obstetrician may schedule an appointment with one of our obstetric anesthesia team members before your delivery. This will ensure an organized pre-delivery plan of care specific to your medical condition and to be well prepared to manage your care during delivery.
Some helpful resources for you regarding pain relief during labor: (Link)