European Lying-in Hospitals and Obstetricians

Irvine Loudon

in Death in Childbirth

Published in print November 1992 | ISBN: 9780198229971
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191678950 | DOI:
European Lying-in Hospitals and Obstetricians

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  • Modern History (1700 to 1945)


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This chapter examines the lying-in or maternity hospitals and the obstetricians in Europe. Though there was more childbirth in lying-in hospitals in Europe compared to Great Britain and the U.S., European countries also experienced high maternal mortality rates caused by puerperal fever. Most of the cases were in hospital delivery. The chance of a woman contracting puerperal fever was around seven times higher if she was delivered in a maternity hospital in the mid-19th century than it would have been if she had been delivered at home.

Keywords: lying-in hospitals; Europe; maternity hospitals; obstetricians; maternal mortality; puerperal fever

Chapter.  7256 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945)

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