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Maternal Collapse in Pregnancy and the Puerperium (Green-top Guideline No. 56)

Published: 01/02/2011

This is the first edition of this guideline.


Update December 2014: New evidence and guidance in this field were reviewed in 2014 and it was decided that revision of this guideline would be deferred to a later date. The version available on the website and app will remain valid until replaced.


Maternal collapse is a rare but life-threatening event with a wide-ranging aetiology. The outcome, primarily for the mother but also for the fetus, depends on prompt and effective resuscitation.

The purpose of this guideline is to:

  • Discuss the identification of women at increased risk of maternal collapse
  • Discuss the different causes of maternal collapse
  • Delineate the initial and continuing management of maternal collapse
  • Review maternal and neonatal outcomes

The guideline covers both hospital and community settings, and includes all gestations and the postpartum period. The resuscitation team and equipment and training requirements are also covered.