What is this article about?
Maternal collapse is a rare, life-threatening event with a wide range of possible causes that may or may not be pregnancy-related. Defined as an acute event resulting in a reduced or absent consciousness and potential cardiac arrest, maternal collapse can occur at any stage of pregnancy and up to six weeks postnatally. With both mother and baby at risk of potentially life-threatening repercussions, prompt recognition and treatment are vital for effective management. In all cases, the wellbeing of the mother should always take priority in acute collapse scenarios, and only once the mother’s condition has been stabilised should action be taken to support the wellbeing of the baby. Fortunately, maternal collapse is rare in Australia and is an emergency that few midwives will see during their careers.