Labor Pain-Relief Primer

Combined Spinal Epidural (CSE)

How It's Given

Drugs are both injected into the spinal fluid and delivered by catheter to the space between the sheath surrounding the spinal cord and the vertebrae.

What It Does

The spinal immediately blocks pain and lasts for an hour or two, while the epidural kicks in after an hour and can provide relief throughout labor.

Things to Consider

  • CSEs are growing in popularity, but because they're still relatively new, they're generally available only in teaching hospitals and state-of-the-art institutions.
  • In almost all cases, a woman can get out of bed and walk around.
  • In almost all cases, a woman can get out of bed and walk around.
  • As with a spinal, a woman may develop intense itching for 10 to 20 minutes.

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