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Amniotic fluid embolism (AFE) is a rare obstetric emergency in which amniotic fluid, fetal cells, hair, or other debris enters the mother's blood stream via the placental bed of the uterus and trigger an allergic reaction. This reaction then results in cardiorespiratory (heart and lung) collapse and coagulopathy. Amniotic fluid embolism (AFE) is a pregnancy complication that causes life-threatening conditions, such as heart failure. It can affect you, your baby, or both of you.
Amniotic fluid probably enters the maternal circulation through the endocervical veins, the placental insertion site, or a site of uterine trauma . Once it reaches the maternal circulation, it can precipitate cardiogenic shock, respiratory failure, and, most likely, an inflammatory and anaphylactoid response.AFE is a diagnosis of exclusion and is made clinically.
International comparison shows that the mortality rate in British Columbia is among the best in the world, lower than Japan (8 per 100 000), Norway (11 per 100 000), the US (14 per 100 000), Russia (45 per 100 000), or Mexico (60 per 100 000). Although improvements are still possible, we can be proud of the current rates in this province.