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Title: Selected psychological factors in etiology of preterm birth


BACKGROUND: A preterm birth is when a pregnancy comes to an end after completing only between 22 and 37 weeks of gestation. This is a serious medical problem that goes beyond obstetrics and neonatology, as prematurity carries a number of deferred health consequences. The etiology of the spontaneous preterm birth is still not entirely clear and unambiguous, which is why it is more and more often explained by a multifactorial model, taking into account a number of anatomical, biochemical, endocrinological, immunological and psychological reasons. Contemporary studies have shown that negative emotions – depression, anxiety and anger, which are the main components of distress – play an important role in the pregnancy and neonatal outcome. The diagnosis of psychological variables that have an adverse impact on the course of pregnancy is important because of the possibility of taking early psychological interventions, reducing the negative impact of these factors.AIM: To analyze the relationship between the risk of obstetric complications (threatened preterm labour, cervical incompetence, preterm premature rupture of membranes – pPROM and preterm delivery) and selected burdening psychological factors.METHOD: For the study, 200 patients of the Pregnancy Risk Ward diagnosed with threatened preterm labour, cervical incompetence, and preterm premature rupture of membranes represented a c ; linical group (K). Additionally, 130 females in physiological pregnancy represented a control group (F). Psychological tests were administered to the pregnant women: Type D Personality Scale - DS14, State and Trait Anxiety Inventory - STAI, The Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale. The analysis of these tests determined the intensity of the psychological dimensions: negative affectivity, social inhibition, anxiety as a state, anxiety as a trait, pregnancy depression and personality identification as either type D or not D. These results were compared in terms of psychological factors in two groups of women: those with pregnancies complicated with symptoms of preterm labor and those with healthy pregnancies. Afterward, in prospective study the relationship between psychological dimensions and preterm birth was examined, comparing women who gave birth prematurely and in the normal labor time.RESULTS: Analysis showed statistically significant differences between the group K and group F in the frequency range type D and the severity of all the sub-dimensions of negative affectivity and two of the three sub-dimensions of social inhibition. Differences were also observed in terms of the intensity of anxiety as a state and pregnancy depression. The anxiety as a trait did not differentiate the groups. Analysis showed the differences between women who gave birth prematurely and those wh ; o gave birth in normal labor time. The differences were observed in terms of the severity of negative affectivity, anxiety as a state and maternity depression. These were the dimensions directly associated with preterm delivery. There was no association between preterm delivery and social inhibition, anxiety as a trait and the frequency of type D personality.CONCLUSIONS: The studies are the first of this kind in Poland and illustrate psychological and obstetric factors in the native population of pregnant women of between 22 and 35 weeks gestation. The results draw conclusions about the relationship of pregnant women with psychopathological conditions and risk of preterm labor symptoms (contractions, shortening and / or dilation of the cervix, premature rupture of membranes) and risk of serious perinatological complications, which may result in preterm delivery. The study documented that the emotional state of pregnant women is important not only in psychological or psychiatric settings, but also during in an obstetric context.

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Level of degree:

2 - studia doktoranckie

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położnictwo ; psychologia

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Wydział Nauk o Zdrowiu


Gierowski, Józef

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tylko w bibliotece

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Last modified:

Mar 16, 2023

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Aug 23, 2016

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Edition name Date
ZB-124953 Mar 16, 2023


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