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Cardiotocograph (CTG)

The machine that is used to measure contractions and baby’s heart rate when continuous monitoring is deemed necessary. You wear two transducers, secured in place by two belts, one towards the top of your bump, and one towards the bottom. The one at the top measures frequency of contractions (not strength), and the one at the bottom measures foetal heart rate. There are two different types of CTG machine, connected and mobile. With a mobile CTG machine, the transducers submit the information to the machine via an electronic signal, whereas with a connected CTG machine, the transducers submit their information along the wire between the transducer and the machine. Being upright and mobile in labour is often easier with a mobile CTG machine, and you may still have the option to use a birthing pool if you wish. However, not all hospitals have mobile CTG machines, or the option to use a pool even if they do; this can be a useful question to ask your local Midwifery team to help you understand your options.

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