Postpartum hemorrhage is a leading cause of maternal morbidity and mortality worldwide, with uterine atony responsible in 80% of cases. In intractable cases, hysterectomy is the final treatment, but it has complications. Many doctors in developing countries with high maternal mortality rates from postpartum hemorrhage can perform cesarean deliveries but cannot perform hysterectomy. Patients with postpartum hemorrhage who need hysterectomy in these countries will die in such cases, whereas, if doctors know this simple, easily learned technique, such patients may survive.
Esike’s technique is a uterine-compression method that uses supplies generally available at delivery hospitals. Six sutures are placed in the lower uterine segment, three anteriorly and three posteriorly. Starting with the middle sutures, the sutures are tied at the fundus with the help of an assistant to provide uterine compression. The more laterally placed sutures are then tied similarly, resulting in uterine compression and stoppage of postpartum hemorrhage.
Esike’s technique was used in controlling life-threatening, uncontrollable postpartum hemorrhage in 18 women and was successful in 16 (89%) without requiring hysterectomy.
Esike’s technique is effective in controlling life-threatening postpartum hemorrhage and can be used in low-resource settings with commonly available supplies and performed by doctors with a common level of training.