MRI of Childbirth

  • Photograph of the open MRI scanner with the patient and the health care personnel before delivery
  • MRI, magnetic resonance imaging.
  • Bamberg. Birth in real-time MRI. Am J Obstet Gynecol 2012.
I just read an article about the first MRI of a woman giving birth. The 24 year old woman entered the open style MRI machine during the second stage of birth, the pushing stage and she remained there for 45 minutes while she pushed her baby out. The machine was turned off as soon as the head was out to protect the baby's ears from the loud machine. It seems to me that the loud sound would negatively impact the baby way before she/he is out of the birth canal. A hearing test was conducted after birth which showed completely normal results.

Here is a link to the actual medical article published in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology:

The article cites that the type of MRI used is "preferable in pregnant women." and that a number of studies have shown no increase in fetal harm. 

Mom showed up in labor, spent the first stage of labor birthing in bed, was given an epidural and then transferred to the open MRI where she pushed the baby out.

What was the goal of this you ask?
"Our main goal was to describe the relationship between fetal movements and position as the fetus passage through the birth canal, using an open MRI scanner."

After watching the video, using my (untrained) eyes, it does not seem to me to give much more information than an ultrasound could. As the article mentions, "Today the cardinal movements can be studied with sonography."

But it is pretty neat to see!

Frequently Asked Questions: What is the best position to give birth?

What is the best position to give birth? Yep, whatever feels right to you in that moment! During our prenatal appointments we will discuss and try out many different positions that you can spend your birthing time in. When we discuss and practice these positions, it will help you visualize your ideal birth and allow you comfort in knowing that you have prepared well.

Frequently Asked Questions: How do I avoid interventions?

In this video, the three doulas discuss how to avoid interventions. The questions to ask your care provider are very important.

I like to go by the acronym BRAND....



When faced with an intervention during birth, you have the right to ask these questions and be fully informed of all your choices.

What would be the BENEFITS of this intervention?
What would be the RISKS of this intervention?
What would be the ALTERNATIVES to this intervention?
What if we do NOTHING instead?
What if we DELAY this intervention?

In our prenatal appointments we will discuss some of the interventions you may encounter and what you're preferences are regarding these interventions. As a doula, I cannot advise you on medical interventions, it is not within my scope of practice to give medical advise. But educating on some of these interventions is within my scope of practice and it's important to discuss them so that I have a better understanding of how to best serve you. 

Einstein Medical Center Montgomery Maternity Care: Hospitals we Serve

Einstein Medical Center Montgomery is a brand new medical center opening up in East Norriton just outside of Norristown. Similiar to Paoli Hospital, the Einstein Medical Center Montgomery Maternity unit will have Labor/Delivery/Recovery rooms. You don't get shuffled from one room to another like most of the area hospitals, you stay in one room for your entire stay. Their website boasts of many amenities including large private rooms with showers, wall to wall windows, flat screen tv's with wifi, and sleeper sofas so partner can stay with mom and baby.

They will also offer child birth education classes, prenatal breastfeeding, sibling preparation and newborn care classes.

Phoenixville Hospital Maternity Pavilion: Hospitals we Serve

Phoenixville Hospital Maternity Pavilion

Phoenixville Hospital Labor and Delivery recently expanded! They continue to serve both normal pregnancies and high risk pregnancies, and now have a bit more space and updated equipment, and comfortable birthing rooms and recovery rooms. Recovery rooms now include a couch or chair for the partner to sleep in to stay with mom and baby.

They also recently expanded their birth preparation offerings:

Healthy Birthing Healthy Baby Programs

Birth preparation
Breastfeeding workshop
Breast pumping class
Infant Preparation
Infant/Child CPR
Carseat Inspections
Sibling Preparation
Postpartum Adjustment Group

Delaware County Memorial Hospital: Hospitals We Serve

Paoli Hospital: Hospitals we Serve

Frequently Asked Questions: How long will the doula stay after birth?

I found this wonderful series on YouTube called 60SecDoulas. They are a group of doulas from the UK answering frequently asked questions in 60 seconds each! They allow their videos to be posted, so I'm adding them to my website to help answer my clients questions about my own services.

Like they say, every doula is different. I will stay with my client to assist in the first feeding and until everyone is comfortable and postpartum procedures are finished, usually about an hour, or until my client feels they are ready for me to leave.

Lankenau Medical Center Mother-Baby Center: Hospitals we Serve

At Lankenau Medical Center, they call their Maternity unit the Mother-Baby Center at Lankenau.

When you give birth an Lankaneu, you spend your first time in a private labor and delivery room, and then after a brief recovery period, you are moved to a postpartum room.

Bryn Mawr Hospital, Hospitals we Serve

Bryn Mawr Hospital

Bryn Mawr Hospital serves moms with normal healthy pregnancies, as well as moms with high risk pregnancies. Among the many services they offer, they have a Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, they offer perinatal testing, breastfeeding support, and fertility and reproductive services.

Bryn Mawr Hospital offers child birth preparation classes, sibling preparation classes, and one day crash courses. These classes also include a tour of the maternity unit. 

I am very familiar with their breastfeeding support group that meets Thursday afternoons, led by a wonderful nurse/lactation consultant named Terry Sanborn, RN, BS, IBCLC. The group meets every Thursday from 2-3pm in conference room F on the 2nd floor of the East wing of Bryn Mawr Hospital. It also meets every other Saturday from 1:30-2:30 in the Clothier Living Room of Clothier Building in Bryn Mawr Hospital. 

When a mom gives birth at Bryn Mawr Hospital, she is offered the opportunity for a lactation consultant to assist her and her baby during their hospital stay directly in their room. Women are also offered breastfeeding classes on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays on the maternity unit. They also offer a baby-care class every evening.