Document Type



Obstetrics and Gynaecology


Objective: To perform a clinical audit of the practices related to the management of third and fourth degree perineal tears.
Methods: The retrorspective study was conducted in 2019 at the Aga Khan University Hospital, Karachi, and comprised medical records from January 2008 to December 2018 of women having singleton term vaginal delivery and sustaining obstetric anal sphincter injuries. The change in practices regarding tear management was compared with a previous audit done at the same institution in 2008. Data was analysed using SPSS 20.
Results: Of the 25,370 deliveries, 142(0.56%) sustained obstetric anal sphincter injuries. There was a significant increase compared to the previous audit in terms of documentation of the method of repair, use of delayed absorbable suture material for the repair of external anal sphincter and follow-up at 6 weeks to see the success of repair and plan the next delivery (p<0.05). The use of vacuum vaginal delivery increased to 27(19%) from 5(4%), but there was decrease in injuries complicated by instrumental vaginal deliveries (p<0.05).
Conclusions: Despite the increase in the number of deliveries, the frequency of obstetric anal sphincter injuries remained similar to the previous audit, indicating that regular clinical audits are integral to keeping clinical practice in accordance with the established standards.

Publication (Name of Journal)

JPMA. The Journal of the Pakistan Medical Association