Partograph versus no partograph: effect on labour progress and delivery outcome: a comparative study


  • Benazir Ahmed Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, JLN Hospital and Research centre, Bhilai, Chattisgarh, India
  • Meena Jain Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, JLN Hospital and Research centre, Bhilai, Chattisgarh, India
  • Hema Bharwani Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, JLN Hospital and Research centre, Bhilai, Chattisgarh, India



Active phase, Apgar score, Partograph, Second stage


Background: Abnormal labour which includes prolonged labour and obstructed labour remain major causes of maternal morbidity. The major reason for neonatal mortality, birth asphyxia and subsequent morbidity is essentially the repercussion which occurs when a complicated labour is not intervened at the right time. A Partograph provides a graphic overview of the progress of labour and records information about maternal and fetal condition during labour. It is considered to be a very effective tool to monitor labour progress and prevent prolonged and obstructed labour.

Methods: This prospective randomised comparative study was conducted in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, JLN Hospital and RC, Bhilai, Chattisgarh, from January 2015 to June 2016. Pregnant women were randomly assigned to two groups, of 200 each, after satisfying the inclusion and exclusion criteria. Women assigned to Group 1 had their active labour modified using modified WHO partograph whereas those assigned to Group 2 were not monitored using the partograph.

Results: Use of Partograph (group 1) significantly reduced the duration of active phase of labour (p <0.0001), duration of second stage (p <0.0001) and thus the total duration of labour (active phase plus second stage) (p <0.0001). Requirement of augmentation was also significantly reduced (p <0.05). Group 1 also had significantly more spontaneous vaginal deliveries (p <0.01) with lesser requirement of operative interventions like LSCS or instrumental deliveries like forceps. Use of partograph also significantly improved neonatal outcome with significantly lesser newborns with Apgar <7 (p <0.05). However, there was no significant difference between the two groups with regard to NICU admissions (p>0.05).

Conclusions: The use of Partograph, when compared to no Partograph plotting in active labour, is associated with better monitoring of labour progress as well as delivery outcome in the form of a healthy mother and a healthy child.


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Original Research Articles