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Experience of Late Miscarriage and Practical Implications for Post-Natal Health Care: Qualitative Study

Department of Health Psychology, Faculty of Public Health, Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, 44307 Kaunas, Lithuania
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Claude Billeaud and Virginie Rigourd
Healthcare 2022, 10(1), 79; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare10010079
Received: 28 October 2021 / Revised: 17 December 2021 / Accepted: 28 December 2021 / Published: 1 January 2022
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pregnancy and Perinatal Health)
Miscarriage is the most common reason for pregnancy loss, affecting around one in four pregnancies. It is classified as a traumatic event, associated with an increased risk for depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress, alcohol dependence, somatic symptoms, sexual dysfunction, suicide, and complicated grief. This study aimed to analyse experiences of late miscarriage and to describe practical implications for post-natal health care based on characteristics of pregnancy loss revealed in a qualitative study. Seven women who had late miscarriages participated in in-depth biographical interviews. A phenomenological thematic analysis was applied. Experiential characteristics of late miscarriage were described by four themes and 13 subthemes: the initial splitting state (Dissociation, An Opened Void, An impaired Symbiosis, and The Body is Still Pregnant while the Psyche is Mourning); Betrayal of the body (Symbolic Experience of Internalised Death, Shocking Materiality of the Ongoing Miscarriage, Lost control of the Body, and Confusing Body Signals); Disconnecting (Depersonalising Medical Environment, Guilt Falsifies perception, and Retreat as a means of Self-Preservation); and Reconnecting (Collecting Shatters and Reinterpretation of Maternal Identity). Based on the results of the experiential analysis, another four themes represent practical recommendations for post-natal health care: Informing, Opportunity for Goodbye, Attention to Emotional Wellbeing, and Respectful Hospital Environment. View Full-Text
Keywords: miscarriage; spontaneous abortion; reproductive health; women’s wellbeing; qualitative research; thematic analysis; phenomenology miscarriage; spontaneous abortion; reproductive health; women’s wellbeing; qualitative research; thematic analysis; phenomenology
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MDPI and ACS Style

Kukulskienė, M.; Žemaitienė, N. Experience of Late Miscarriage and Practical Implications for Post-Natal Health Care: Qualitative Study. Healthcare 2022, 10, 79. https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare10010079

AMA Style

Kukulskienė M, Žemaitienė N. Experience of Late Miscarriage and Practical Implications for Post-Natal Health Care: Qualitative Study. Healthcare. 2022; 10(1):79. https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare10010079

Chicago/Turabian Style

Kukulskienė, Milda, and Nida Žemaitienė. 2022. "Experience of Late Miscarriage and Practical Implications for Post-Natal Health Care: Qualitative Study" Healthcare 10, no. 1: 79. https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare10010079

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