Background: Few quality data exist on the safety of osteopathic manipulative treatment (OMT) during pregnancy. The Pregnancy Research on Osteopathic Manipulation Optimizing Treatment Effects (PROMOTE) study was a randomized controlled clinical trial that studied the application of an OMT protocol to manage pain and dysfunction in pregnant patients during their third trimester. Objective: To evaluate the safety of an OMT protocol applied during the third trimester of pregnancy by analyzing incidence of high-risk status and labor and delivery outcomes. Methods: In the PROMOTE study, 400 pregnant patients were randomly assigned to 1 of 3 study groups: usual care plus OMT (OMT), usual care plus placebo ultrasound treatment (PUT), or usual care only (UCO). The incidence of high-risk status of participants and outcomes of labor and delivery, including length of labor, fever in mother during labor, operative vaginal delivery, conversion to cesarean delivery, need for forceps or vacuum device, need for episiotomy, incidence of perineal laceration, meconium-stained amniotic fluid, and infants’ Apgar scores, were analyzed. Results: Data from 380 participants were studied. High-risk status was less likely to develop in participants who received OMT (95% CI, 0.16-0.91; P=.03). The OMT protocol also did not increase risk of precipitous labor, operative vaginal delivery, conversion to cesarean delivery, need for forceps or vacuum device, need for episiotomy, incidence of perineal laceration, or meconium-stained amniotic fluid when compared with participants in the other 2 groups (P>.05). Of all other maternal outcomes examined, no difference was reported among the 3 treatment groups with the exception of incidence of prolonged labor in the OMT group. Participants receiving OMT had longer durations of labor than participants in the other groups (P=.002). Conclusion: These results suggest that the OMT protocol given during the third trimester of pregnancy as applied in the PROMOTE study is safe with regard to labor and delivery outcomes. The increased duration in labor in the OMT group needs further study.
- Manipulative medicine
- Osteopathic manipulative treatment