Skip to main content

Membrane sweep

Before inducing labour, you'll be offered a membrane sweep, also known as a cervical sweep, to bring on labour.

To carry out a membrane sweep, your midwife or doctor sweeps their finger around your cervix during an internal examination.

This action should separate the membranes of the amniotic sac surrounding your baby from your cervix. This separation releases hormones (prostaglandins), which may start your labour.

Having a membrane sweep does not hurt but expect some discomfort or slight bleeding afterwards.

If labour does not start after a membrane sweep, you'll be offered induction of labour.

Induction is always carried out in a hospital maternity unit. You'll be looked after by midwives and doctors will be available if you need their help.

Follow us on: