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Obstetric Anaesthesia

Both the Primary () and Final () FRCA require extensive and specific knowledge of obstetric anaesthesia. AnaesthesiaUK has produced a new educational resource to help candidates prepare for examinations.  This has been tailored to the FRCA knowledge requirements laid down by the Royal College of Anaesthetists. This resource is approved by the Obstetric Anaesthetists' Association.

Royal College of Anaesthetists 'Knowledge' Requirements


This is a ‘Key Unit of Training’ in which SpR 1/2 trainees should spend the equivalent of at least 1 month of training and, normally, not more than 3 months.
Obstetric anaesthesia and analgesia is the only area of anaesthetic practice where two patients are cared for simultaneously. Pregnancy is a physiological rather than a pathological state. Patient expectations are high and the mother expects full involvement in her choices of care. The majority of the workload is the provision of analgesia in labour and anaesthesia fordelivery. Multidisciplinary care for the sick mother is increasingly important and highlighted...


Anatomy and physiology of pregnancy, physiology of labour, basic knowledge of obstetrics, pharmacology of drugs relevant to obstetric anaesthesia, pain and pain relief in labour, emergencies in obstetric anaesthesia...

Royal College of Anaesthetists - THE CCT IN ANAESTHESIA III:
Competency Based Specialist Registrar Years 1 and 2 Training and Assessment

  Knowledge, Skills, Attitudes and Behaviour - Obstetric Anaesthesia

Obstetrics anaesthesia articles

Physiological changes of pregnancy
Cardiac arrest in a pregnant woman
Commonly used drugs in obstetric anaesthesia
Intralipid - local anaesthetic toxicity
Obstetric emergencies
Placental abruption
Placenta praevia
Uterine rupture
Emergency Treatment of Obstetric Haemorrhage
CEMACH 2000-2002
CEMACH 2003-2005
AAGBI Guidelines for Obstetric Anaesthetic Services Edition 2005
Obesity and obstetric anaesthesia; Review article; Anaesthesia January 2006
Anatomical and Physiological Changes in Pregnancy Relevant to Anaesthesia
Coagulation Disorders In Pregnancy
Labour Analgesia
Choice of needle: Spinal anaesthesia
Epidural anaesthesia
Spinal anaesthesia
Spinal anaesthetic spread
Assessment of spinal anaesthetic block
Combined spinal and epidural Anaesthesia (CSE)
Complications of regional anaesthesia in Obstetrics
Nerve injury resulting from a labour epidural
Maternal Collapse

This resource is endorsed by the Obstetric Anaesthetists' Association for its role in education. Their site may be viewed by clicking on the icon.


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