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Can the fetal head descend into the pelvic cavity at 37 weeks?

Answered by
Dr.
Dr. Deepti Verma

OBGYN, Maternal and Fetal Medicine

Practicing since :2009

Answered : 5068 Questions

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Posted on Fri, 22 Sep 2017 in Pregnancy
Question: Hello,

I'm 37 weeks of pregnancy and baby has been head down for 6 weeks but sitting very high, no engagement into pelvis at all. Doctor said we can wait till 38weeks and induce later. Inducing labour helps normal delivery or it will end up having C section? Is there a way to find out why baby hasn't engaged yet!!

Thanks in advance!

https://www.babycenter.com.au/thread/0000/head-not-engaged-at-38-weeks#ixzz4rR7AV7V5
doctor
Answered by Dr. Deepti Verma 12 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Cannot diagnose oneself

Detailed Answer:
Hi dear,
I have gone through your question and understand the concerns.

Head of the fetus can get engaged up to 37-38 weeks, so it is prudent to wait till 38 weeks.
If the head is not engaged till 38 weeks, normal delivery is highly unlikely.

However, induction of labor can be tried and with increasing uterine contractions, the fetal head can engage in the pelvis and normal delivery can occur.

However, if it does not engage even with contractions, then Caesarean section should be done.
It is not possible to check for engagement of the head by oneself.

Only a proper obstetrical examination can diagnose the engagement of the head.

Hope you found the answer helpful.

Regards
Dr Deepti Verma
OBGYN
Maternal and fetal medicine specialist
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Arnab Banerjee
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Deepti Verma 30 minutes later
Thanks for your reply.

what are the chances to have normal delivery with inducing labor?

Thanks in advance!!

doctor
Answered by Dr. Deepti Verma 2 hours later
Brief Answer:
it's low

Detailed Answer:
Hi dear,

The exact chances of normal delivery with induction in a non-engaged head cannot be quoted.

However, it is definitely low.

Regards
Dr Deepti Verma


Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Arnab Banerjee
doctor
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