BACKGROUND: Massive obstetric hemorrhage can be catastrophic, with considerable maternal morbidity and mortality. CASE: A 41-year-old term gravida experienced massive postpartum hemorrhage attributed to an amniotic fluid embolism with rapid development of disseminated intravascular coagulation and resultant abdominal compartment syndrome. In this critically ill patient, a fascial prosthesis used for abdominal wall closure was placed to expedite multiple abdominal explorations and packing. Additionally, this device facilitated fascial closure once the abdominal compartment syndrome was resolved. CONCLUSION: Abdominal compartment syndrome resulting from overwhelming obstetric hemorrhage may necessitate emergent decompressive laparotomy to alleviate increased intra-abdominal pressure and end-organ dysfunction. The fascial prosthesis allows a staged abdominal wall closure to be performed once the abdominal compartment syndrome is resolved. © 2006 by The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Published by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.