What the Heck is a Bishop's Score?

Inductions: you may have heard of them. Around 25% of women choose to be induced for a myriad of reasons. So how do doctors know if this is a good choice for you? How can they be sure that baby is ready for birth? One way to plan for a successful induction is by calculating the womens bishop score. 

What the heck is a bishop's score?

The bishops score grades patients who would most likely achieve a successful induction. It is calculated with numbers 0-2 or 0-3. The highest possible score is a 13. So what does the bishops score grade?

Position of the cervix (posterior, middle, anterior) ,
consistency of cervix (firm, medium, soft),
effacement (0-30%, 40-50%, 60-70%, 80+%) (effacement is how thin the cervix is. Its usually around 3 cm long and will efface until paper thin.)
Dilation (closed, 1-2 cm, 3-4 cm, 5+cm) and
fetal station (-3, -2, -1,0 and +1,+2)

Phew! That is a lot of things that need to be in place before baby is born vaginally. Once you've tallied up your points you have a bishops score. One great app to grade your own bishops score is called "Bishop's Score Calc". It makes it super easy to type in the info that applies to you and it kicks out your score. 

What does the calculation mean?
A score of 5 or less shows that labor will not likely start without an induction and 9 or more shows that labor will start spontaneously. A low bishops score tells us that an induction will most likely be unsuccessful and a score 8 or higher shows a possibly successful induction.

Obviously birth is crazy and these numbers arent gold but they do give us a look into what our bodies are doing at the time of induction and may help you plan ahead for the days to come. 

So, if you're doctor is talking about an induction and its something that interests you, ask about your bishops score! It could help you make the decision that's right for you!