The amnion is considered to be the load-bearing part of the fetal membranes. We investigated the influence of osmolarity of the testing medium and hydration on its fracture toughness. Mode I fracture tests revealed that physiological variations in the bath osmolarity do not influence the tear resistance of amnion, while larger changes, i.e. from physiological saline solution to distilled water, lead to a significant reduction of the fracture toughness. Uniaxial tensile tests on collagen hydrogels confirmed the reduction in toughness, suggesting that lower bath osmolarity triggers changes in the failure properties of single collagen fibers. Prenatal surgeries, in particular fetoscopic procedures with partial amniotic carbon dioxide insufflation, might result in dehydration of the amnion. Dehydration induced a brittle behavior; however, subsequent rehydration for 15 min resulted in a similar tear resistance as for the fresh tissue.