Peripartum care of persons with obesity: a scoping review of recommendations and practical tools for implementation

Michelle A. Kominiarek, Irina Cassimatis, Jack Peace, Ashish Premkumar, Paloma Toledo, Linda Catherine O'Dwyer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Objective Despite the growing prevalence of obesity among reproductive aged persons in the USA, evidence-based guidelines for peripartum care are lacking. The objective of this scoping review is to identify obesity-related recommendations for peripartum care, evaluate grades of evidence for each recommendation, and identify practical tools (eg, checklists, toolkits, care pathways and bundles) to support their implementation in clinical practice. Data sources We searched MEDLINE, EMBASE, CINAHL, the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials and from inception to December 2020 for eligible studies addressing peripartum care in persons with obesity. Study eligibility criteria Inclusion criteria were published evidence-rated recommendations and practical tools for peripartum care of persons with obesity. Study appraisal and synthesis methods Pairs of independent reviewers extracted data (source, publication year, content and number of recommendations, level and grade of evidence, description of tool) and identified similarities and differences among the articles. Results Of 18 315 screened articles, 18 were included including 7 articles with evidence-rated recommendations and 11 practical tools (3 checklists, 3 guidelines, 1 care bundle, 1 flowchart, 1 care pathway, 1 care map and 1 protocol). Thirteen of 39 evidence-rated recommendations were based on expert opinion. Recommendations related to surgical antibiotic prophylaxis and subcutaneous tissue closure at caesarean delivery received the highest grade of evidence. Some of the practical tools included a checklist from the USA regarding anticoagulation after caesarean delivery (evidence-supported recommendation), a bundle for surgical site infections after caesarean delivery in Australia (evidence did not support recommendation) and a checklist with content for several aspects of peripartum care from Canada (evidence supported seven of nine definitive recommendations). Conclusion The recommendations for peripartum care for persons with obesity are based on limited evidence and few practical tools for implementation exist. Future work should focus on developing practical tools based on high-quality studies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere061430
JournalBMJ open
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 19 2022


  • Maternal medicine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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