Gastroschisis: A review of practice
School of Nursing & Midwifery
Gastroschisis is an abdominal wall defect in the fetus, affecting as many as 1 in 2000 pregnancies. This is a complex medical condition that is growing in prevalence worldwide, and one to which midwives will inevitably be exposed. There is a lack of consensus in the literature as to the cause of gastroschisis and for clear evidence-based treatment regarding indication and timing of birth. While it is agreed that specialist multidisciplinary collaboration is needed from pre-conception, through antenatal surveillance, and into labour, birth and postnatal care, the research is medically led, with no description of a midwifery role. In acknowledging that gastroschisis is a complex medical issue, specific medical and surgical interventions are not examined, but instead a midwifery plan of care within the multidisciplinary approach is derived from the available literature.