Nigel Lee

Date of Submission



Significant back pain is often experienced by women in labour and may increase the need for pharmacological pain relief, often with associated side effects including excessive sedation and restriction to mobility. Sterile water injections (SWIs) are a simple, safe, effective, non-pharmacological technique for relieving back pain in labour; however, the number of injections required to achieve optimal analgesia is unknown. Furthermore, administration of SWI causes a brief, but intense, pain which may influence the acceptability of the procedure to labouring women. There is limited data from previous trials on how women view SWI, and the benefits of this particular analgesic option, versus the pain associated with administration. No previous studies have examined how midwives regard the prospect of causing pain to labouring women; albeit to relieve pain. The aim of this research was to determine if a single injection of sterile water was clinically similar to four injections in terms of degree of analgesia and to examine the experiences of labouring women and midwives receiving, and administering, SWIs...


School of Nursing, Midwifery & Paramedicine

Document Type


Access Rights

Open Access


296 pages

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Faculty of Health Sciences