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Does Antenatal Education Affect Labour and Birth? A Structured Review of the Literature

Childbirth classes encouraged partner involvement, less anxiety, and less false labor but led to more labor interventions such as induction and epidural use.

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  • N: 10 articles (of 3286 identified) originating from Spain, Sweden, Canada, Australia, Iran, UK, Thailand and the United States
  • Search Method: Ovid Medline, CINAHL, Cochrane, and Web of Knowledge databases were used to identify appropriate research articles published in English from 2000 to 2012, using relevant terms in a variety of combinations
  • Inclusion Criteria: Relevancy for labor and birthing outcomes


  1. To determine the effect of antenatal education on labor and birth, particularly normal birth

Design—Systematic literature review



  1. The labor and birthing effects on women attending antenatal education may include less false labor admissions, more partner involvement, and less anxiety but more labor interventions.
  2. Several studies found increased labor and birth interventions such as induction of labor and epidural use.
  3. There is contradictory evidence on the effect of antenatal education on mode of birth.