Hektoen International

A Journal of Medical Humanities

Credé’s maneuver

Avi Ohry
Tel Aviv, Israel

Carl Siegmund Franz Credé. Via Neonatology on the Web.

Carl Siegmund Franz Credé (1819–1892) was a German gynecologist and obstetrician born in Berlin. In 1852, he became director of the Berlin School of Midwives and head of the maternity division of the Berlin Charité Hospital. Later, he moved to Leipzig.

Credé is known for the Credé maneuver, a technique to quicken placental expulsion after delivery by applying manual pressure through the abdominal wall.1,2,3 Although Credé has the eponymous title, Scottish obstetrician William Smellie (1697–1763) described a similar method of placental extraction in 1750, which preceded Credé’s description. The same idea was also expressed in 1781 by Dublin obstetrician Edward Foster.4

A form of Credé’s maneuver is also used today in urology and neuro-urology. To empty a flaccid bladder, gentle manual pressure is periodically applied over the symphysis pubis to push the residual urine. The maneuver is sometimes used in patients with neurological conditions such as spinal cord injury and spina bifida. The Valsalva maneuver is another method of voiding by increasing intra-abdominal pressure. Some complications that may occur from the use of these methods include epidydymoorchitis, upper urinary tract reflux, and hemorrhoids.1 Today, intraoperative extrinsic manual bladder compression is used for trans-obturator tape adjustment during mid-urethral sling surgery in women with stress urinary incontinence and those with mixed urinary incontinence.5

Credé is also credited with the application of silver nitrate eyedrops to prevent ophthalmia neonatorum, or gonorrheal infection of the eyes, in newborns.


  1. “Credé’s Maneuver.” Science Direct. From Christopher Raab and J. Gartner, “Diagnosis of Childhood Cancer,” Primary Care: Clinics in Office Practice vol. 36, no. 4 (2009): 671-84. https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/medicine-and-dentistry/credes-maneuver.
  2. “Credé’s maneuver.” Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cred%C3%A9%27s_maneuver.
  3. Shaw, WF. “Crede’s method.” Br Med J 1948;1(4554):748.
  4. Garrison, FH. An Introduction to the History of Medicine, 4th edition. Philadelphia and London: WB Saunders, 1929, 338.
  5. Lee, HH et al. “Credé maneuver to adjust tape tension during trans-obturator tape mid-urethral sling in mixed urinary incontinence.” Int Urogynecol J 2020;31(4):809-16.

AVI OHRY, MD, is married with two daughters. He is Emeritus Professor of Rehabilitation Medicine at Tel Aviv University, the former director of Rehabilitation Medicine at Reuth Medical and Rehabilitation Center in Tel Aviv, and a member of The Lancet‘s Commission on Medicine & the Holocaust. He conducts award-winning research in neurological rehabilitation, bioethics, medical humanities and history, and on long-term effects of disability and captivity. He plays the drums with three jazz bands.

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