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Topical Collection "Women's Reproductive and Maternal Health"

Editor

Prof. Dr. Johanne Sundby
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Community Medicine and Global Health, The University of Oslo, 0316 Oslo, Norway
Interests: maternal and reproductive health services; newborn and women's reproductive health; quality of care
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Topical Collection Information

Dear Colleagues,

This Collection will have a broad focus on women’s health, but especially its role in reproduction, pregnancy and childbirth. Contraceptive use, abortion services and issues of abuse and violence are welcome. Articles that discuss quality of care for women, dignity and respect for women, women’s sexuality and women’s reproductive mental health are also welcome. We are also looking for articles that provide an overview of women’s reproductive health in specific settings, for specific groups or specific services. Articles with policy relevance are important.

Prof. Dr. Johanne Sundby
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • Women’s health
  • Reproductive and sexual health
  • Contraception
  • Maternal health
  • Violence and abuse
  • Quality of care
  • Dignity and respect

Published Papers (57 papers)

2022

Jump to: 2021, 2020, 2019

Article
The Association between Postpartum Pelvic Girdle Pain and Pelvic Floor Muscle Function, Diastasis Recti and Psychological Factors—A Matched Case-Control Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(10), 6236; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19106236 - 20 May 2022
Viewed by 527
Abstract
There is uncertainty regarding the association between abdominal morphology, pelvic floor function, and psychological factors in women with postpartum pelvic girdle pain (PGP). The aim of this case-control study was to evaluate the differences between women with and without persistent PGP regarding pelvic [...] Read more.
There is uncertainty regarding the association between abdominal morphology, pelvic floor function, and psychological factors in women with postpartum pelvic girdle pain (PGP). The aim of this case-control study was to evaluate the differences between women with and without persistent PGP regarding pelvic floor function, diastasis recti, and psychological factors 6–24 weeks postpartum. Pelvic floor manometry, palpation examination of abdominal muscles, the International Consultation on Incontinence Questionnaire Short Form, The Depression, Anxiety and Stress Scale—21, and the Pain Catastrophizing Scale were used. The PGP group presented with lower vaginal resting pressure (p < 0.001), more tenderness (p = 0.018) and impaired voluntary activation of pelvic floor muscles (p ≤ 0.001). Women with pain also had more distortion on the level of the anterior abdominal wall (p = 0.001) and more severe diastasis recti (p = 0.046) when compared to pain-free controls. Lower vaginal resting pressure was the strongest factor explaining PGP (OR 0.702, 95%CI 0.502–0.981). There were no differences in terms of the pelvic floor strength, endurance, severity of urinary incontinence and reported distress between the groups. Women with PGP 6–24 weeks postpartum differ in pelvic floor and abdominal muscle function from the pain-free controls. Vaginal resting pressure may be an important factor in pelvic girdle pain shortly postpartum. Further studies are needed to see a trend in changes over time. Full article
Article
Adult Daughters of Alcoholic Parents—A Qualitative Study of These Women’s Pregnancy Experiences and the Potential Implications for Antenatal Care Provision
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(6), 3714; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19063714 - 21 Mar 2022
Viewed by 1003
Abstract
The adult children of alcoholic parents are at increased risk of having health problems compared to the adult children of nonalcoholic parents. Little is known about how growing up with alcoholic parents affects women’s experiences when pregnant. The objectives of this study were [...] Read more.
The adult children of alcoholic parents are at increased risk of having health problems compared to the adult children of nonalcoholic parents. Little is known about how growing up with alcoholic parents affects women’s experiences when pregnant. The objectives of this study were to explore how adverse childhood experiences related to parental alcohol abuse affect women during their pregnancy and to assess the potential implications of women’s experiences for antenatal care provision. Twelve in-depth interviews were performed with women who were brought up by an alcoholic mother and/or father. Systematic text condensation was used to analyse the data. Two main categories were identified: ‘establishing relationships and having social support’ and ‘antenatal care encounters and concerns during pregnancy’. Women’s trust in others in adult life was impacted by their upbringing. Strained relationships with their parents and few friends meant that the women primarily relied on their partners for support. Neither antenatal care providers nor women talked about women’s childhood experiences at the visits. The women described concerns related to the baby’s health, lack of predictability and control during the pregnancy, as well as apprehensiveness regarding birth and motherhood. The potential implications for practice include systematic screening for adverse childhood experiences, antenatal preparation classes, parenting courses, and post-graduate training. Full article
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Article
An Uninformed Decision-Making Process for Cesarean Section: A Qualitative Exploratory Study among the Slum Residents of Dhaka City, Bangladesh
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(3), 1465; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19031465 - 27 Jan 2022
Viewed by 1044
Abstract
The decision-making process and the information flow from physicians to patients regarding deliveries through cesarean section (C-section) has not been adequately explored in Bangladeshi context. Here, we aimed to explore the extent of information received by mothers and their family members and their [...] Read more.
The decision-making process and the information flow from physicians to patients regarding deliveries through cesarean section (C-section) has not been adequately explored in Bangladeshi context. Here, we aimed to explore the extent of information received by mothers and their family members and their involvement in the decision-making process. We conducted a qualitative exploratory study in four urban slums of Dhaka city among purposively selected mothers (n = 7), who had a cesarean birth within one-year preceding data collection, and their family members (n = 12). In most cases, physicians were the primary decision-makers for C-sections. At the household level, pregnant women were excluded from some crucial steps of the decision-making process and information asymmetry was prevalent. All interviewed pregnant women attended at least one antenatal care visit; however, they neither received detailed information regarding C-sections nor attended any counseling session regarding decisions around delivery type. In some cases, pregnant women and their family members did not ask health care providers for detailed information about C-sections. Most seemed to perceive C-sections as risk-free procedures. Future research could explore the best ways to provide C-section-related information to pregnant women during the antenatal period and develop interventions to promote shared decision-making for C-sections in urban Bangladeshi slums. Full article

2021

Jump to: 2022, 2020, 2019

Article
Association between Second-Time Mother’s Prenatal Depression and Firstborn’s Behaviour Problems: The Mediation Role of Parenting Daily Hassles
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(23), 12794; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph182312794 - 04 Dec 2021
Viewed by 661
Abstract
Background: With the relaxation of birth control policy in China in recent years, second-time mothers’ mental health has raised concerns. However, the impact of firstborn children’s behaviour problems on second-time mothers’ prenatal depression in families transitioning to siblinghood has received little attention from [...] Read more.
Background: With the relaxation of birth control policy in China in recent years, second-time mothers’ mental health has raised concerns. However, the impact of firstborn children’s behaviour problems on second-time mothers’ prenatal depression in families transitioning to siblinghood has received little attention from family psychologists. Aims: This research aims to investigate whether firstborn children’s behaviour problems affect second-time mothers’ prenatal depression and the mediation role of daily parenting hassles, i.e., minor stressors associated with parenting, on this relationship. Methods: Data about second-time mothers’ prenatal depression, parenting daily hassles, and firstborn children’s behaviour problems were collected from 105 families transitioning to two children families using mother-reported questionnaires. Regressions were used to analyze the data. Results: About half of the mothers in the sample have depressive symptoms. Firstborns’ behaviour problems did not have a direct effect on the mother’s prenatal depression, but the problems did have an indirect effect via parenting daily hassles. The mothers’ age was significantly associated with prenatal depression. Conclusions: The mediation role of parenting daily hassles in the association with firstborn’s behaviour problems and mother’s prenatal depression suggests the need for support that reduce the levels of daily parenting hassles from firstborn children. Full article
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Article
Lived Experiences and Perceptions of Childbirth among Pastoralist Women in North-Eastern Ethiopia: A Multimethod Qualitative Analysis to the WHO Health Systems Responsiveness Framework
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(23), 12518; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph182312518 - 28 Nov 2021
Viewed by 714
Abstract
Maternity should be a time of hope and joy. However, for women in pastoralist communities in Ethiopia, the reality of motherhood is often grim. This problem is creating striking disparities of skilled birth uptake among the agrarian and pastoral communities in Ethiopia. So [...] Read more.
Maternity should be a time of hope and joy. However, for women in pastoralist communities in Ethiopia, the reality of motherhood is often grim. This problem is creating striking disparities of skilled birth uptake among the agrarian and pastoral communities in Ethiopia. So far, the depth and effects of the problem are not well understood. This study is intended to fill this research gap by exploring mothers’ lived experiences and perceptions during skilled birthing care in hard-to-reach communities of Ethiopia. An Interpretive Phenomenological approach was employed to analyse the exploratory data. Four key informant interviews, six in-depth interviews, six focus group discussions, and twelve focused observations were held. WHO responsiveness domains formed the basis for coding and analysis: dignity, autonomy, choice of provider, prompt attention, communication, social support, confidentiality, and quality of basic amenities. The skilled birthing experience of nomadic mothers is permeated by a deep-rooted and hidden perceived neglect, which constitutes serious challenges to the health system. Mothers’ experiences reflect not only the poor skilled delivery uptake, but also how health system practitioners are ignorant of Afar women’s way of life, their living contexts, and their values and beliefs regarding giving birth. Three major themes emerged from data analysis: bad staff attitude, lack of culturally acceptable care, and absence of social support. Nomadic mothers require health systems that are responsive and adaptable to their needs, beliefs, and values. The abuse and disrespect they experience from providers deter nomadic women from seeking skilled birthing care. Women’s right to dignified, respectful, skilled delivery care requires the promotion of woman-centred care in a culturally appropriate manner. Skilled birthing care providers should be cognizant of the WHO responsiveness domains to ensure the provision of culturally sensitive birthing care. Full article
Article
Self-Fetal Wellbeing Monitoring and Ante-Natal Care during the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Qualitative Descriptive Study among Pregnant Women in Indonesia
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(21), 11672; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph182111672 - 06 Nov 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 976
Abstract
Pregnant women are expected to have a high level of awareness when it comes to checking their fetal health and ensuring their welfare. This study explored the experiences of pregnant women in Indonesia who were monitoring their fetal wellbeing during the COVID-19 pandemic. [...] Read more.
Pregnant women are expected to have a high level of awareness when it comes to checking their fetal health and ensuring their welfare. This study explored the experiences of pregnant women in Indonesia who were monitoring their fetal wellbeing during the COVID-19 pandemic. A qualitative
descriptive study design with a constructivist paradigm was used. Twenty-two pregnant women were recruited and participated in a semi-structured interview. Analysis of the transcribed interviews used a content, thematic and comparative process. Three themes emerged from the analysis: feelings
and responses, changes to the ante natal care service during the COVID-19 pandemic, and the fetal wellbeing monitoring, tools, and methods used. Advice on how pregnant women should conduct fetal wellbeing monitoring during COVID-19 is urgently needed. The results of this study indicate there is a need for interventions to help pregnant women carry out self-fetal wellbeing monitoring in times where they have fewer contacts with health professionals such as during the COVID-19 pandemic. Full article
Article
Willingness to Oppose Smoking among Pregnant Women
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(21), 11636; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph182111636 - 05 Nov 2021
Viewed by 717
Abstract
Even though smoking causes numerous threats to the developing foetus, it is the most common addiction in Polish women of reproductive age. Most studies undertake to examine the subject of opposing second-hand smoking or creating tools to reprimand pregnant women more effectively using [...] Read more.
Even though smoking causes numerous threats to the developing foetus, it is the most common addiction in Polish women of reproductive age. Most studies undertake to examine the subject of opposing second-hand smoking or creating tools to reprimand pregnant women more effectively using a qualitative methodology. The study aimed to determine the profile of a pregnant woman who is willing to oppose the smoking of another pregnant woman. The research was conducted using an original multiple-choice questionnaire. The survey was shared on websites for expecting parents. Completed questionnaires were collected from 11,448 pregnant women. The Wald test for logistic regression was used for statistical analysis. Predictors of whether someone would draw another pregnant women’s attention to the fact that smoking is harmful were: intellectual work (OR 1.136; p-value 0.020) and currently being a student (OR 1.363; p-value 0.004), involvement of the child’s father (OR 1.377; p-value < 0.001), contact with social campaigns (OR 1.150; p-value 0.005) and knowledge about the consequences of smoking, as well as talking to the midwife about the harmfulness of cigarettes during pregnancy (OR 1.655; p-value < 0.001). Interpersonal relationships leave scope for public health interventions. It is worth enhancing criticism against smoking by specialists through information and education campaigns. Full article
Article
Gestational Bell’s Palsy Is Associated with Higher Blood Pressure during Late Pregnancy and Lower Birth Weight: A Retrospective Case-Control Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(19), 10342; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph181910342 - 30 Sep 2021
Viewed by 748
Abstract
The associations between gestational Bell’s palsy (GBP) and late obstetric complications (LOCs), i.e., preeclampsia (PE), eclampsia (EC), gestational hypertension (GHT), and gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) remain unclear. This study aimed to evaluate these associations and the neonatal health of the newborns born from [...] Read more.
The associations between gestational Bell’s palsy (GBP) and late obstetric complications (LOCs), i.e., preeclampsia (PE), eclampsia (EC), gestational hypertension (GHT), and gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) remain unclear. This study aimed to evaluate these associations and the neonatal health of the newborns born from pregnant women with and without GBP. A retrospective 1:5 case-control study matching exact maternal age and gravidity between pregnant women with and without GBP in Songklanagarind Hospital from 2006 to 2016 was conducted. The associations between GBP and PE, EC, GHT, and GDM, as well as comparison of the newborns’ health indices were analyzed by bivariate analysis (p < 0.05). Eight GBP cases out of 8,756 pregnant women were recruited. Six GBP cases were first or second gravid. GBP occurred during the third trimester in five cases. Except for higher median systolic blood pressure (125 (114.2, 127.5) vs. (110 (107.0, 116.0), p = 0.045) and diastolic blood pressures (77 (73.0, 80.8) vs. 70 (65.0, 73.2), p = 0.021) in the GBP cases, associations between GBP and all LOCs could not be concluded due to the lack of power. However, a significantly lower mean birth weight in the newborns of GBP mothers was found (2672.2 (744.0) vs. 3154.8 (464.7), p = 0.016) with statistically significant power. Except for the higher blood pressures and lower birth weights of the newborns of GBP mothers, an association between GBP and LOCs remains inconclusive. Full article
Article
Alcohol Consumption during COVID among Women with an Existing Alcohol-Use Disorder
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(18), 9460; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18189460 - 08 Sep 2021
Viewed by 967
Abstract
Prior to the pandemic, our research team implemented a randomized controlled trial of an intervention to reduce risk for alcohol-exposed pregnancy (AEP) in American Indian women. When active recruitment for the in-person trial was paused due to COVID, the research team moved to [...] Read more.
Prior to the pandemic, our research team implemented a randomized controlled trial of an intervention to reduce risk for alcohol-exposed pregnancy (AEP) in American Indian women. When active recruitment for the in-person trial was paused due to COVID, the research team moved to conducting follow-up surveys with participants who had completed the intervention to better understand changes to their alcohol use during the pandemic. We collected surveys from 62 American Indian women who had completed the Native CHOICES intervention. Baseline data collected pre-COVID included demographics and scores on the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT). Follow-up surveys conducted during the active pandemic period included a self-reported questionnaire about changes in drinking patterns. At pre-COVID baseline, all participants were engaged in heavy or binge drinking. At follow-up during COVID, 24.2% reported drinking more, and over half had at least one binge drinking episode. Approximately half reported reduced drinking. We found that risky drinking remained an issue during the pandemic for many American Indian women who had engaged in this behavior pre-COVID, while others reported reducing their alcohol consumption. As the pandemic abates, concerted efforts must be made to reach those with identified alcohol use disorders to offer resources and intervention as needed. Full article
Review
Social Freezing: Pressing Pause on Fertility
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(15), 8088; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18158088 - 30 Jul 2021
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1403
Abstract
Increasing numbers of women are undergoing oocyte or tissue cryopreservation for medical or social reasons to increase their chances of having genetic children. Social egg freezing (SEF) allows women to preserve their fertility in anticipation of age-related fertility decline and ineffective fertility treatments [...] Read more.
Increasing numbers of women are undergoing oocyte or tissue cryopreservation for medical or social reasons to increase their chances of having genetic children. Social egg freezing (SEF) allows women to preserve their fertility in anticipation of age-related fertility decline and ineffective fertility treatments at older ages. The purpose of this study was to summarize recent findings focusing on the challenges of elective egg freezing. We performed a systematic literature review on social egg freezing published during the last ten years. From the systematically screened literature, we identified and analyzed five main topics of interest during the last decade: (a) different fertility preservation techniques, (b) safety of freezing, (c) usage rate of frozen oocytes, (d) ethical considerations, and (e) cost-effectiveness of SEF. Fertility can be preserved for non-medical reasons through oocyte, embryos, or ovarian tissue cryopreservation, with oocyte vitrification being a new and optimal approach. Elective oocyte cryopreservation is better accepted, supports social gender equality, and enhances women’s reproductive autonomy. Despite controversies, planned oocyte cryopreservation appears as a chosen strategy against age-related infertility and may allow women to feel that they are more socially, psychologically, and financially stable before motherhood. Full article
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Article
Association between Maternal Origin, Pre-Pregnancy Body Mass Index and Caesarean Section: A Nation-Wide Registry Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(11), 5938; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18115938 - 01 Jun 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1299
Abstract
Aims: To explore the association between maternal origin and birthplace, and caesarean section (CS) by pre-pregnancy body mass index (BMI) and length of residence. Methods: We linked records from 118,459 primiparous women in the Medical Birth Registry of Norway between 2013 and 2017 [...] Read more.
Aims: To explore the association between maternal origin and birthplace, and caesarean section (CS) by pre-pregnancy body mass index (BMI) and length of residence. Methods: We linked records from 118,459 primiparous women in the Medical Birth Registry of Norway between 2013 and 2017 with data from the National Population Register. We categorized pre-pregnancy BMI (kg/m2) into underweight (<18.5), normal weight (18.5–24.9) and overweight/obese (≥25). Multinomial regression analysis estimated crude and adjusted relative risk ratios (RRR) with 95% confidence intervals (CI) for emergency and elective CS. Results: Compared to normal weight women from Norway, women from Sub-Saharan Africa and Southeast Asia/Pacific had a decreased risk of elective CS (aRRR = 0.57, 95% CI 0.37–0.87 and aRRR = 0.56, 0.41–0.77, respectively). Overweight/obese women from Europe/Central Asia had the highest risk of elective CS (aRRR = 1.42, 1.09–1.86). Both normal weight and overweight/obese Sub-Saharan African women had the highest risks of emergency CS (aRRR = 2.61, 2.28-2.99; 2.18, 1.81-2.63, respectively). Compared to women from high-income countries, the risk of elective CS was increasing with a longer length of residence among European/Central Asian women. Newly arrived migrants from Sub-Saharan Africa had the highest risk of emergency CS. Conclusion: Women from Sub-Saharan Africa had more than two times the risk of emergency CS compared to women originating from Norway, regardless of pre-pregnancy BMI. Full article
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Article
Oxytocin Administration in Low-Risk Women, a Retrospective Analysis of Birth and Neonatal Outcomes
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(8), 4375; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18084375 - 20 Apr 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1577
Abstract
Background: In recent years, higher than the recommended rate of oxytocin use has been observed among low-risk women. This study examines the relationship between oxytocin administration and birth outcomes in women and neonates. Methods: A retrospective analysis of birth and neonatal outcomes for [...] Read more.
Background: In recent years, higher than the recommended rate of oxytocin use has been observed among low-risk women. This study examines the relationship between oxytocin administration and birth outcomes in women and neonates. Methods: A retrospective analysis of birth and neonatal outcomes for women who received oxytocin versus those who did not. The sample included 322 women with a low-risk pregnancy. Results: Oxytocin administration was associated with cesarean section (aOR 4.81, 95% CI: 1.80–12.81), instrumental birth (aOR 3.34, 95% CI: 1.45–7.67), episiotomy (aOR 3.79, 95% CI: 2.20–6.52) and length of the second stage (aOR 00:18, 95% CI: 00:04–00:31). In neonatal outcomes, oxytocin in labor was associated with umbilical artery pH ≤ 7.20 (OR 3.29, 95% CI: 1.33–8.14). Admission to neonatal intensive care unit (OR 0.56, 95% CI: 0.22–1.42), neonatal resuscitation (OR 1.04, 95% CI: 0.22–1.42), and Apgar score <7 (OR 0.48, 95% CI: 0.17–1.33) were not associated with oxytocin administration during labor. Conclusions: Oxytocin administration during labor for low-risk women may lead to worse birth outcomes with an increased risk of instrumental birth and cesarean, episiotomy and the use of epidural analgesia for pain relief. Neonatal results may be also worse with an increased proportion of neonates displaying an umbilical arterial pH ≤ 7.20. Full article
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Article
Physical Activity Behaviors and Barriers in Multifetal Pregnancy: What to Expect When You’re Expecting More
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(8), 3907; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18083907 - 08 Apr 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1215
Abstract
The health benefits of prenatal physical activity (PA) are established for singleton pregnancies. In contrast, individuals with multifetal pregnancies (twins, triplets or more) are recommended to restrict or cease PA. The objectives of the current study were to determine behaviors and barriers to [...] Read more.
The health benefits of prenatal physical activity (PA) are established for singleton pregnancies. In contrast, individuals with multifetal pregnancies (twins, triplets or more) are recommended to restrict or cease PA. The objectives of the current study were to determine behaviors and barriers to PA in multifetal pregnancies. Between 29 May and 24 July 2020, individuals with multifetal pregnancies participated in an online survey. Of the 415 respondents, there were 366 (88%) twin, 45 (11%) triplet and 4 (1%) quadruplet pregnancies. Twenty-seven percent (n = 104/388) of respondents completed no PA at all during pregnancy, 57% (n = 220/388) completed PA below current recommendations, and 16% (n = 64/388) achieved current recommendations (150-min per week of moderate-intensity activity). Most respondents (n = 314/363 [87%]) perceived barriers to PA during multifetal pregnancy. The most prominent were physical symptoms (n = 204/363 [56%]) and concerns about risks to fetal wellbeing (n = 128/363 [35%]). Sixty percent (n = 92/153) felt that these barriers could be overcome but expressed the need for evidence-based information regarding PA in multifetal pregnancy. Individuals with multifetal pregnancies have low engagement with current PA recommendations but remain physically active in some capacity. There are physical and psychosocial barriers to PA in multifetal pregnancy and future research should focus on how these can be removed. Full article
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2020

Jump to: 2022, 2021, 2019

Article
Association between Reproductive Span and Sarcopenia
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(1), 154; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18010154 - 28 Dec 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1089
Abstract
Sarcopenia is defined as an age-related loss of skeletal muscle and is associated with several health disorders. Causes of sarcopenia, which included physical inactivity, alcohol, dietary habits, and smoking, have been researched. The present study was undertaken to examine the association between reproductive [...] Read more.
Sarcopenia is defined as an age-related loss of skeletal muscle and is associated with several health disorders. Causes of sarcopenia, which included physical inactivity, alcohol, dietary habits, and smoking, have been researched. The present study was undertaken to examine the association between reproductive span and sarcopenia in Korean women. Data obtained from 2008 to 2011 Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys (KNHANES) were analyzed. We defined sarcopenia based on the cut-off values of the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health (FNIH) sarcopenia project criteria: ASM/BMI < 0.512 for women. Reproductive span was defined as years from menarche to menopause, and we divided the 3970 study subjects into three groups by reproductive span tertile. Multivariate logistic regression analysis was used to determine adjusted ORs for the relation between reproductive span and sarcopenia. The prevalence of sarcopenia in the study was 17.7% (704 of 3970). Multiple logistic regression analysis was performed using weighted populations. After adjusting for covariates, reproductive span was found to be inversely associated with the risk of sarcopenia [Tertile 1 = 1 (reference); Tertile 2, odds ratio (OR) = 0.927, 95% confidence interval (CI) = 0.863–0.995; Tertile 3, OR = 0.854, 95% CI = 0.793–0.915]. Full article
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Article
Hypertensive Disorders of Pregnancy and Medication Use in the 2015 Pelotas (Brazil) Birth Cohort Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(22), 8541; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17228541 - 18 Nov 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 981
Abstract
Hypertensive disorders of pregnancy account for approximately 22% of all maternal deaths in Latin America and the Caribbean. Pharmacotherapies play an important role in preventing and reducing the occurrence of adverse outcomes. However, the patterns of medications used for treating women with hypertensive [...] Read more.
Hypertensive disorders of pregnancy account for approximately 22% of all maternal deaths in Latin America and the Caribbean. Pharmacotherapies play an important role in preventing and reducing the occurrence of adverse outcomes. However, the patterns of medications used for treating women with hypertensive disorders of pregnancy (HDP) living in this country is unclear. A population-based birth cohort study including 4262 women was conducted to describe the pattern of use of cardiovascular agents and acetylsalicylic acid between women with and without HDP in the 2015 Pelotas (Brazil) Birth Cohort. The prevalence of maternal and perinatal outcomes in this population was also assessed. HDP were classified according to Ministry of Health recommendations. Medications were defined using the Anatomical Therapeutic Chemical Classification System and the substance name. In this cohort, 1336 (31.3%) of women had HDP. Gestational hypertension was present in 636 (47.6%) women, 409 (30.6%) had chronic hypertension, 191 (14.3%) pre-eclampsia, and 89 (6.7%) pre-eclampsia superimposed on chronic hypertension. Approximately 70% of women with HDP reported not using any cardiovascular medications. Methyldopa in monotherapy was the most frequent treatment (16%), regardless of the type of HDP. Omega-3 was the medication most frequently reported by women without HDP. Preterm delivery, caesarean section, low birth weight, and neonatal intensive care admissions were more prevalent in women with HDP. Patterns of use of methyldopa were in-line with the Brazilian guidelines as the first-line therapy for HDP. However, the large number of women with HDP not using medications to manage HDP requires further investigation. Full article
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Article
Transfers of Care between Healthcare Professionals in Obstetric Units of Different Sizes across Spain and in a Hospital in Ireland: The MidconBirth Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(22), 8394; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17228394 - 13 Nov 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2130
Abstract
Background: In Europe, the majority of healthy women give birth at conventional obstetric units with the assistance of registered midwives. This study examines the relationships between the intrapartum transfer of care (TOC) from midwife to obstetrician-led maternity care, obstetric unit size (OUS) with [...] Read more.
Background: In Europe, the majority of healthy women give birth at conventional obstetric units with the assistance of registered midwives. This study examines the relationships between the intrapartum transfer of care (TOC) from midwife to obstetrician-led maternity care, obstetric unit size (OUS) with different degrees of midwifery autonomy, intrapartum interventions and birth outcomes. Methods: A prospective, multicentre, cross-sectional study promoted by the COST Action IS1405 was carried out at eight public hospitals in Spain and Ireland between 2016–2019. The primary outcome was TOC. The secondary outcomes included type of onset of labour, oxytocin stimulation, epidural analgesia, type of birth, episiotomy/perineal injury, postpartum haemorrhage, early initiation of breastfeeding and early skin-to-skin contact. A logistic regression was performed to ascertain the effects of studied co-variables on the likelihood that participants had a TOC; Results: Out of a total of 2,126 low-risk women, those whose intrapartum care was initiated by a midwife (1772) were selected. There were statistically significant differences between TOC and OUS (S1 = 29.0%, S2 = 44.0%, S3 = 52.9%, S4 = 30.2%, p < 0.001). Statistically differences between OUS and onset of labour, oxytocin stimulation, type of birth and episiotomy or perineal injury were observed (p = 0.009, p < 0.001, p < 0.001, p < 0.001 respectively); Conclusions: Findings suggest that the model of care and OUS have a significant effect on the prevalence of intrapartum TOC and the birth outcomes. Future research should examine how models of care differ as a function of the OUS in a hospital, as well as the cost-effectiveness for the health care system. Full article
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Article
Sense of Coherence Mediates the Links between Job Status Prior to Birth and Postpartum Depression: A Structured Equation Modeling Approach
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(17), 6189; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17176189 - 26 Aug 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1251
Abstract
Postpartum depression (PPD) has detrimental effects on the health of the mother, child and family. Socio-demographic variables can influence PPD. Sense of coherence (SOC) is a personal resource that mitigates the experience of stressful events. We hypothesized that SOC would have a protective [...] Read more.
Postpartum depression (PPD) has detrimental effects on the health of the mother, child and family. Socio-demographic variables can influence PPD. Sense of coherence (SOC) is a personal resource that mitigates the experience of stressful events. We hypothesized that SOC would have a protective effect against PPD over time. The aim was to investigate the effects of socio-demographic factors and SOC on PPD at birth (T1) and nine months postpartum (T2). A longitudinal study of primiparous women (n = 114; age range 18–47 years) measured PPD, SOC and socio-demographics at T1 and T2. The majority were married, had no economic difficulties and were employed before birth. Results showed that PPD at T1 (15.8%) declined to 6.2% (T2). Job status was positively associated with SOC at T1. The structured equation model accounted for 27% of the variance in PPD (T2). In the first pathway, job status was linked to PPD (T2) via SOC at T1 and T2. In the second, SOC and PPD (T1) and SOC (T2) mediated the link between job status and PPD (T2). Results and clinical implications are discussed in the context of the theory of conservation of resources. An intervention for enhancing SOC is recommended for woman at risk of PPD. Full article
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Article
Factors Impacting Family Planning Use in Mali and Senegal
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(12), 4399; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17124399 - 19 Jun 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1189
Abstract
The total fertility rate in Mali (6.2) is the third highest in the world. Despite sociocultural similarities, the total fertility rate in neighboring Senegal is 4.2. The aim of this study is to identify factors which may help to explain the differences between [...] Read more.
The total fertility rate in Mali (6.2) is the third highest in the world. Despite sociocultural similarities, the total fertility rate in neighboring Senegal is 4.2. The aim of this study is to identify factors which may help to explain the differences between the two countries and which may thereby inform family planning policy in Mali. A cross-sectional study was conducted with a convenience sample of 602 married women aged 16–50 from urban and rural sites in southern Mali and Senegal. A total of 298 respondents from Mali and 304 from Senegal completed a structured questionnaire between July and October 2018. In total, 11.1% of the Malian respondents and 30.9% of the Senegalese respondents were currently using family planning, and 34.6% and 40.5%, respectively, had ever used a modern family planning method. Pressure from husbands was cited as a primary influence for having more children (in 50.3% of Malians and 45.4% of Senegalese, p = 0.000). Women’s age, education level, and knowledge of different contraceptive methods were associated with ever use of contraceptives. After adjustment for confounders, discussing family planning with one’s husband was the strongest predictor of contraceptive use among both Senegalese (OR = 3.4, 95% CI (1.9–6.3), p = 0.000) and Malian respondents (OR = 7.3, (4.1–13.3), p = 0.000). Full article
Article
Uptake of Skilled Maternal Healthcare in Ethiopia: A Positive Deviance Approach
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(5), 1712; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17051712 - 05 Mar 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1347
Abstract
Risk factor approaches are often used when implementing programs aimed at enforcing advantageous health care behaviors. A less frequently-used strategy is to identify and capitalize on those who, despite risk factors, exhibit positive behaviors. The aim of our study was to identify positive [...] Read more.
Risk factor approaches are often used when implementing programs aimed at enforcing advantageous health care behaviors. A less frequently-used strategy is to identify and capitalize on those who, despite risk factors, exhibit positive behaviors. The aim of our study was to identify positive deviant (PD) mothers for the uptake of skilled maternal services and to explore their characteristics. Data for the study came from two waves of the Ethiopian Demographic and Health Surveys conducted in 2011 and in 2016. PD mothers were defined as those reporting no formal education but with adequate use of antenatal care (ANC) and/or institutional delivery services. Two-level multilevel regression analysis was used to analyze the data. Factors associated with PD for the use of ANC services were: partner’s education status, involvement in household decision making, exposure to media, and distance to the health facility. Factors associated with PD for health facility delivery were: partner’s education, woman’s employment status, ANC visit during index pregnancy, exposure to media, and perceived challenge to reach health facility. Rural-urban and time-related differences were also identified. The positive deviance approach provides a means for local policy makers and program managers to identify factors facilitating improved health behaviour and ultimately better health outcomes while acknowledging adverse risk profiles. Full article
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Article
Effects of Women’s Work-Family Multiple Role and Role Combination on Depressive Symptoms in Korea
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(4), 1249; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17041249 - 15 Feb 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1134
Abstract
This study set out to investigate the effects of multiple roles on depressive symptoms in women. The role of women was divided into worker, household worker, spouse, parent, and caregiver roles to identify the differences in depressive symptoms according to the number of [...] Read more.
This study set out to investigate the effects of multiple roles on depressive symptoms in women. The role of women was divided into worker, household worker, spouse, parent, and caregiver roles to identify the differences in depressive symptoms according to the number of roles, role-fulfillment, and role-combination. Using the sixth raw data of the 2016 Korean Longitudinal Survey of Women and Families for analysis, the data had 6198 respondents who did not have missing values in the major variables. There are three main findings of this study: (1) as the number of roles increased, depressive symptoms of women was decreased. In addition, role-combination was a more meaningful element; (2) women who did not have any roles tended to be more depressed; (3) the caregiver role showed a negative effect on depressive symptoms of women. This study was to include the various aspects of women’s roles and to determine the effects of multi-roles on depressive symptoms in women. Full article
Article
Maternal Prepregnancy Body Mass Index, Gestational Weight Gain, and Risk of Adverse Perinatal Outcomes in Taiwan: A Population-Based Birth Cohort Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(4), 1221; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17041221 - 14 Feb 2020
Cited by 19 | Viewed by 2186
Abstract
Epidemiological studies have shown that maternal prepregnancy body mass index (BMI) and gestational weight gain (GWG) are associated with increased risk of perinatal outcomes. However, the evidence of such associations in Asian populations is limited. We conducted a secondary data analysis to investigate [...] Read more.
Epidemiological studies have shown that maternal prepregnancy body mass index (BMI) and gestational weight gain (GWG) are associated with increased risk of perinatal outcomes. However, the evidence of such associations in Asian populations is limited. We conducted a secondary data analysis to investigate the relationships of prepregnancy BMI and GWG with the risks of adverse perinatal outcomes, including gestational diabetes (GDM), gestational hypertension (GHTN), preeclampsia, cesarean delivery, preterm birth, low birth weight (LBW), and macrosomia. We categorized prepregnancy BMI by the WHO classification and GWG by the Institute of Medicine guidelines. We performed adjusted logistic regression models to estimate the odds ratios of adverse perinatal outcomes. A total of 19,052 women were included; prepregnancy overweight and obesity were associated with a greater risk of GDM, GHTN, preeclampsia, cesarean delivery, preterm birth, and macrosomia. Women with excessive GWG had a greater risk of GHTN, preeclampsia, cesarean delivery, and macrosomia. In conclusion, regardless of the range of GWG during pregnancy, maternal prepregnancy BMI is significantly associated with the risk of adverse perinatal outcomes in Taiwan. Public health attention regarding obesity reduction before conception and prenatal counseling for optimal GWG is needed to mitigate the risk of poor perinatal outcomes. Full article
Article
Family Planning Practices in Appalachia: Focus Group Perspectives on Service Needs in the Context of Regional Substance Abuse
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(4), 1198; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17041198 - 13 Feb 2020
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2035
Abstract
Reproductive health disparities in the Appalachian region may be driven by barriers to healthcare access. However, the barriers specific to accessing family planning services in Appalachia have not yet been identified from the perspectives of Appalachian community members. Moreover, it is unclear how [...] Read more.
Reproductive health disparities in the Appalachian region may be driven by barriers to healthcare access. However, the barriers specific to accessing family planning services in Appalachia have not yet been identified from the perspectives of Appalachian community members. Moreover, it is unclear how community members might perceive elevated levels of opioid use in the region to impact family planning practices. To fill this gap in knowledge, the current qualitative study explored community perspectives about family planning in Appalachia in the context of the opioid epidemic for the purpose of developing a survey instrument based on these responses. We conducted three video call focus group interviews with community stakeholders, those who live, work and are invested in Appalachia (N = 16), and analyzed the responses using Levesque, Harris, and Russell’s (2013) five pillars of healthcare access as a framework to categorize family planning practices and perceptions of service needs in the context of regional substance abuse: (1) approachability, (2) acceptability, (3) availability and accommodation, (4) affordability, and (5) appropriateness. Subthemes within each of these five categories were also identified. Our findings highlight stakeholder concerns around a lack of knowledge about and access to family planning services in Appalachia. Community members also expressed concern around the lack of availability of substance use treatment services, which may negatively impact family planning use and access in the region. Full article
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Article
Contextual Factors Influencing the MAMAACT Intervention: A Qualitative Study of Non-Western Immigrant Women’s Response to Potential Pregnancy Complications in Everyday Life
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(3), 1040; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17031040 - 06 Feb 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1531
Abstract
In western countries, immigrant women have an increased risk of negative birth outcomes. Immigrant women’s and maternity care system’s delayed response to pregnancy complications contribute to ethnic inequities in reproductive health. The MAMAACT intervention was developed to improve midwives’ and women’s response to [...] Read more.
In western countries, immigrant women have an increased risk of negative birth outcomes. Immigrant women’s and maternity care system’s delayed response to pregnancy complications contribute to ethnic inequities in reproductive health. The MAMAACT intervention was developed to improve midwives’ and women’s response to pregnancy complications in Denmark. The study examines the context of the implementation of the MAMAACT intervention and investigates how the intended intervention mechanisms regarding response to pregnancy complications were affected by barriers in non-Western immigrant women’s everyday life situations. Twenty-one interviews with non-Western immigrant women were undertaken. Systematic text condensation and the situational-adaptation framework by Alonzo were used to analyze data. Four main categories were identified: ‘Sources of knowledge during pregnancy’, ‘Containment of pregnancy warning signs’, ‘Barriers during the onset of acute illness’ and ‘Previous situations with maternity care providers’. Attention to potential pregnancy complications may conflict with immigrant women’s everyday life situations and result in the containment of symptoms as well as causing delays in seeking medical assistance. It is probable that barriers in women’s everyday life will impact the intended intervention mechanisms and thus the full potential of the intervention may not be reached. Full article
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Article
Association between Generalized Anxiety Disorder and Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder in a Diagnostic Interviewing Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(3), 988; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17030988 - 05 Feb 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1894
Abstract
Background: Premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD) demonstrates predictable, cyclic, affective and somatic symptoms that are aggravated in the late luteal phase and are resolved by menstruation. Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) is characterized by excessive and persistant worry. The present study aims to evaluate the [...] Read more.
Background: Premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD) demonstrates predictable, cyclic, affective and somatic symptoms that are aggravated in the late luteal phase and are resolved by menstruation. Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) is characterized by excessive and persistant worry. The present study aims to evaluate the association between PMDD and GAD. The fluctuations of behavior inhibition, anxiety, depression, and irritability were also evaluated during the menstrual cycle among women with PMDD and healthy women. Methods: There were 100 women diagnosed with PMDD based on a psychiatric interview and on a prospective evaluation in three menstrual cycles. A total of 96 healthy women were recruited as controls. Each individual’s GAD diagnosis, behavior inhibition, behavior activation, depression, anxiety, and irritability were assessed in both luteal and follicular phases. Results: The odds ratio of women with GAD having PMDD was 7.65 (95% CI: 1.69–34.63) in relation to those without it. This association was partially mediated by behavior inhibition and irritability and was completely mediated by depression. Women with PMDD and GAD had higher anxiety during the luteal phase and higher PMDD severity, depression, and irritability than those without GAD in the follicular phase. There is no difference in anxiety, depression, or irritability between the luteal and follicular phases among women with PMDD and GAD. Conclusions: Women with GAD were more likely to have PMDD. Anxiety, depression, and irritability symptoms in women with PMDD and GAD were not relieved in the follicular phase. Thus, GAD should be assessed for women with PMDD. Their anxiety, depression, and irritability should be intervened not only in the luteal phase, but also in the follicular phase. Depression, irritability and behavior inhibition mediated the association between PMDD and GAD. Intervening with these mediators to attenuate GAD and PMDD comorbidity should be researched in the future. Full article
Review
Canadian Arctic Contaminants and Their Effects on the Maternal Brain and Behaviour: A Scoping Review of the Animal Literature
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(3), 926; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17030926 - 02 Feb 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1608
Abstract
Background: Environmental toxicants such as methylmercury, polychlorinated biphenyls, and organochlorine pesticides are potentially harmful pollutants present in contaminated food, soil, air, and water. Exposure to these ecologically relevant toxicants is prominent in Northern Canadian populations. Previous work focused on toxicant exposure during pregnancy [...] Read more.
Background: Environmental toxicants such as methylmercury, polychlorinated biphenyls, and organochlorine pesticides are potentially harmful pollutants present in contaminated food, soil, air, and water. Exposure to these ecologically relevant toxicants is prominent in Northern Canadian populations. Previous work focused on toxicant exposure during pregnancy as a threat to fetal neurodevelopment. However, little is known about the individual and combined effects of these toxicants on maternal health during pregnancy and post-partum. Methods: A scoping review was conducted to synthesize the current knowledge regarding individual and combined effects of methylmercury, polychlorinated biphenyls, and organochlorine pesticides on maternal behaviour and the maternal brain. Relevant studies were identified through the PubMed, Embase, and Toxline databases. Literature involving animal models and one human cohort were included in the review. Results: Research findings indicate that exposures to these environmental toxicants are associated with neurochemical changes in rodent models. Animal models provided the majority of information on toxicant-induced alterations in maternal care behaviours. Molecular and hormonal changes hypothesized to underlie these alterations were also addressed, although studies assessing toxicant co-exposure were limited. Conclusion: This review speaks to the limited knowledge regarding effects of these persistent organic pollutants on the maternal brain and related behavioural outcomes. Further research is required to better comprehend any such effects on maternal brain and behaviour, as maternal care is an important contributor to offspring neurodevelopment. Full article
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2019

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Article
Prevalence and Sources of Second-Hand Smoking Exposure among Non-Smoking Pregnant Women in an Urban Setting of Vietnam
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(24), 5022; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16245022 - 10 Dec 2019
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 2082
Abstract
Exposure to second-hand smoke (SHS) among non-smoking pregnant women can lead to adverse maternal and fetal outcomes. A cross-sectional study was performed from July to August 2016 among 432 pregnant women at Bach Mai Hospital, Hanoi, Vietnam, to assess the prevalence and sources [...] Read more.
Exposure to second-hand smoke (SHS) among non-smoking pregnant women can lead to adverse maternal and fetal outcomes. A cross-sectional study was performed from July to August 2016 among 432 pregnant women at Bach Mai Hospital, Hanoi, Vietnam, to assess the prevalence and sources of SHS exposure among non-smoking pregnant women. Socio-economic characteristics and information regarding SHS exposure of participants were collected. Multivariable logistic regression was employed to identify associated factors. Overall, 92.6% and 64.5% of pregnant women were exposed to SHS in their lifetime and in the last 30 days, respectively. Cafeterias and restaurants had the highest proportion of pregnant women exposed to SHS. Those who reported that “smoking is allowed at home” (OR = 3.18; 95%CI = 1.97–5.13); going to working place (OR = 1.86; 95%CI = 1.08–3.19), going to state authority offices (OR = 1.98; 95%CI = 1.15–3.41), and cafeterias (OR = 1.96; 95%CI = 1.22–3.16) had the highest risk of SHS exposure in the last 30 days. We have found a high proportion of SHS exposure among non-smoking pregnant women in Vietnam. This comes from a multitude of sources, including homes, workplaces, cafeterias, and restaurants. The data emphasises the need for further intervention to address this health issue. Full article
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Article
Impact of Maternal Smoking on the Onset of Breastfeeding versus Formula Feeding: A Cross-Sectional Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(24), 4888; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16244888 - 04 Dec 2019
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 1567
Abstract
This study sought to estimate the prevalence of maternal smoking and its association with exclusive breastfeeding vs. formula feeding. A cross-sectional study was performed on postpartum women at a public hospital in Spain, between January and August 2018. The main variables studied were [...] Read more.
This study sought to estimate the prevalence of maternal smoking and its association with exclusive breastfeeding vs. formula feeding. A cross-sectional study was performed on postpartum women at a public hospital in Spain, between January and August 2018. The main variables studied were their age, level of study, smoking habits, and chosen mode of infant feeding. In total, 948 postpartum women were included. Of these, 12.45% were smokers who smoked a mean of 7.23 cigarettes/day. Among the group of smokers, the probability of feeding the newborns with formula milk was multiplied by 2.32 ([95%CI 1.50–3.58] p < 0.001). When stratifying tobacco use into mild, moderate and severe, we found a statistically significant dose–response pattern. These associations and their statistical significance were maintained when adjusting by age and level of study. In conclusion, in the group of postpartum mothers who smoked, the probability of feeding the newborns with formula milk doubled. Our data highlight the need to improve health education programs in women of childbearing age, especially during pregnancy. Full article
Article
Community Stakeholders’ Perspectives on Intimate Partner Violence during Pregnancy—A Qualitative Study from Ethiopia
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(23), 4694; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16234694 - 25 Nov 2019
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1748
Abstract
Intimate partner violence (IPV) in pregnancy adversely affects the health of women and unborn children. To prevent this, the community responses, societal systems, and structures to support victims of IPV in pregnancy are vital. Objectives: to explore community stakeholders’ perspectives related to IPV [...] Read more.
Intimate partner violence (IPV) in pregnancy adversely affects the health of women and unborn children. To prevent this, the community responses, societal systems, and structures to support victims of IPV in pregnancy are vital. Objectives: to explore community stakeholders’ perspectives related to IPV in pregnancy in Jimma, Ethiopia, and if needed, create the knowledge base for interventions. Methods: using an exploratory design, this qualitative study had a maximum-variation (multiple spectrum sources) sampling strategy with 16 semi-structured interviews of purposively selected key informants representing different community institutions. Guided by Connell’s theory of gender and power, a content analysis of the translated interviews was conducted using Atlas.ti 7 software. Results: reconciliation between IPV victims and their abusers was the solution promoted by almost all the respondents. There was limited awareness of the adverse impacts IPV in pregnancy has on the health of the woman and the foetus. Despite regular encounters with victims, there is no organized or structured operational response to support IPV victims between the participating institutions. Conclusion: the potential danger of IPV for the mother or the unborn child was not well understood by the members of the studied Ethiopian community. Neither coordinated efforts to support IPV victims nor links among relevant agencies existed. The study demonstrated the dire need of coordinated practical action, changes in current socio-cultural norms, formal training and capacity building, awareness creation, clear intervention guidelines, and facilitation of support networks among relevant institutions in Ethiopian communities. Full article
Article
A Pill in the Lifeworld of Women in Burkina Faso: Can Misoprostol Reframe the Meaning of Abortion
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(22), 4425; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16224425 - 12 Nov 2019
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1485
Abstract
In Burkina Faso, induced abortion is socially stigmatized, condemned, disapproved and legally restricted to cases of rape, incest, fetal malformation or endangerment to the life of the mother. Many women often resort to unsafe procedures to induce abortion, which puts their health at [...] Read more.
In Burkina Faso, induced abortion is socially stigmatized, condemned, disapproved and legally restricted to cases of rape, incest, fetal malformation or endangerment to the life of the mother. Many women often resort to unsafe procedures to induce abortion, which puts their health at great risk. Misoprostol, which is officially restricted to the treatment of postpartum hemorrhage or post-abortion care, is also used illegally by women to terminate their pregnancies. Misoprostol represents an addition to the existing abortion methods, such as vacuum aspiration, which health workers have often used to induce abortion clandestinely. Many women also use misoprostol to self-induce abortions, replacing abortifacients such as herbal teas, potions, high doses of antimalarial drugs, or bleach. Despite the changes that occur in abortion access due to the use of misoprostol, little is known about what the drug means to its users and how this meaning can in turn influence the meaning of abortion. The aim of this paper is to describe how the use of misoprostol to terminate pregnancy contributes to changing women’s perception of the meaning of abortion. This paper is based on ethnographic fieldwork conducted between March 2016 and February 2017 in the city of Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso. By examining the relation between the use of misoprostol and the meaning that women give to abortion, this study found that women experience abortion either spontaneously or using emergency contraception with misoprostol. Through the experience of women, this paper claims that the meaning of abortion should be seen as a social construct and fundamentally rooted in individual practices and experiences rather than being subject to dichotomist global discourse. Full article
Article
Early- and Late-Luteal-Phase Estrogen and Progesterone Levels of Women with Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(22), 4352; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16224352 - 07 Nov 2019
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 2353
Abstract
Objective/introduction: The dynamics of ovarian hormone fluctuations during the luteal phase of the menstruation cycle were previously suggested to contribute to the development of premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD) symptoms, but adequate empirical evidence has not been obtained from hormone concentration studies. We prospectively [...] Read more.
Objective/introduction: The dynamics of ovarian hormone fluctuations during the luteal phase of the menstruation cycle were previously suggested to contribute to the development of premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD) symptoms, but adequate empirical evidence has not been obtained from hormone concentration studies. We prospectively evaluated estrogen and progesterone levels in the early luteal (EL) and late luteal (LL) phases in women with PMDD and the association of these levels with PMDD symptom severity. Methods: 63 women with PMDD and 53 controls without such severe symptoms were evaluated for the estrogen and progesterone levels, and PMDD severity in the EL and LL phases. Results: The results demonstrated that the women with PMDD had a lower EL-phase estrogen level than the controls. Covariant analysis demonstrated that the interaction term between EL-phase estrogen and EL-phase progesterone level was associated with PMDD severity. Among women with lower EL estrogen levels, higher EL-phase progesterone was observed among the women with PMDD versus controls. These results suggest that low EL-phase estrogen level could moderate the provoking effect of EL progesterone in women with PMDD. Overall, these data suggest a possible role of estrogen and progesterone in the development of PMDD symptoms. Full article
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Article
Knowledge towards Cervical and Breast Cancers among Industrial Workers: Results from a Multisite Study in Northern Vietnam
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(21), 4301; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16214301 - 05 Nov 2019
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1404
Abstract
Breast and cervical cancer cases are rising among service and industrial women workers in Vietnam. We conducted a cross-sectional study among 287 workers in three factories in Hanoi and Bac Ninh from July to September 2018 to describe the knowledge of these cancers [...] Read more.
Breast and cervical cancer cases are rising among service and industrial women workers in Vietnam. We conducted a cross-sectional study among 287 workers in three factories in Hanoi and Bac Ninh from July to September 2018 to describe the knowledge of these cancers among industrial workers in Northern Vietnam using a structured questionnaire. Factors associated with knowledge of breast and cervical cancer were identified using generalized linear models (GLM). In our study, approximately one-third of participants believed breast cancer was caused by the lack of breastfeeding, exposure to pollution, and chemicals. Less than 50% knew about sexually transmitted infections that can cause cervical cancer or were aware of a vaccine for cervical cancer. Having one sexual partner within the last year was positively associated with having a higher score of knowledge for both diseases. Receiving a medical checkup within the last 12 months and seeking health information via the internet were related to greater breast cancer knowledge. Targeted education campaigns are needed to ensure proper knowledge and improve awareness of breast cancer and cervical cancer among industrial workers. Full article
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Article
Romantic Love and Reproductive Hormones in Women
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(21), 4224; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16214224 - 31 Oct 2019
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2424
Abstract
Increased reproductive success is among the most commonly proposed adaptive functions of romantic love. Here, we tested if hormonal changes associated with falling in love may co-vary with hormonal profiles that predict increased fecundity in women. We compared blood serum levels of estradiol [...] Read more.
Increased reproductive success is among the most commonly proposed adaptive functions of romantic love. Here, we tested if hormonal changes associated with falling in love may co-vary with hormonal profiles that predict increased fecundity in women. We compared blood serum levels of estradiol (E2, E2/T), luteinizing hormone (LH), follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), prolactin (PRL), free testosterone (fT), and cortisol (CT), measured in the early follicular phase of the menstrual cycle in single women (N = 69) and in women at the beginning of a romantic heterosexual relationship who reported being in love with their partner (N = 47). Participants were healthy, regularly cycling women aged 24 to 33 who did not use hormonal contraception. We found that women in love had higher levels of gonadotropins (FSH, LH) and lower testosterone levels compared to single women who were not in love. These groups of women did not, however, differ in terms of estradiol, prolactin, or cortisol levels. Full article
Article
Sexual Functioning in Pregnant Women
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(21), 4216; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16214216 - 30 Oct 2019
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 1943
Abstract
Sexual activity during pregnancy is determined by emotional, psychosocial, hormonal, and anatomical factors and varies during trimesters. This work aimed to establish women’s sexual activity during each trimester of pregnancy. A total of 624 women were included in the study and filled in [...] Read more.
Sexual activity during pregnancy is determined by emotional, psychosocial, hormonal, and anatomical factors and varies during trimesters. This work aimed to establish women’s sexual activity during each trimester of pregnancy. A total of 624 women were included in the study and filled in the questionnaire three times, once during each trimester of pregnancy. The first part of the survey included questions about socio-demographic characteristics, obstetric history, and medical details of a given pregnancy. The second part was the Polish version of the female sexual function index (FSFI) questionnaire. Comparison of the mean scores for the overall sexual function of each trimester revealed clinically relevant sexual dysfunction in the second and third trimesters (mean values 25.9 ± 8.7 and 22.7 ± 8.7, respectively; p < 0.01). Women were most sexually active during their second trimester. In the first trimester of pregnancy, women were most likely to choose intercourse in the missionary position. Women with vocational education were characterized by the lowest and homogenous FSFI values. Total FSFI score depended on the martial status—the highest value pertained to married women (25.2 ± 6.9; p = 0.02). Full article
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Article
The Effect of a Club in Making Differences in Knowledge, Attitude, and Practices on Family Planning Among Married Adolescent Girls in Urban Slums in Bangladesh
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(20), 4037; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16204037 - 22 Oct 2019
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1424
Abstract
Early marriage and childbearing have led to Bangladesh having the highest adolescent fertility rate in the Asia Pacific region. Adolescent pregnancy is correlated with pregnancy-related complications, preterm delivery, delivery of low-birth weight babies, and spousal violence. A quasi-experimental study was conducted in four [...] Read more.
Early marriage and childbearing have led to Bangladesh having the highest adolescent fertility rate in the Asia Pacific region. Adolescent pregnancy is correlated with pregnancy-related complications, preterm delivery, delivery of low-birth weight babies, and spousal violence. A quasi-experimental study was conducted in four urban slums (two intervention and two control areas) of Dhaka from July 2014 to August 2016 to assess the effectiveness of a married adolescent girls club (MAG club) in reducing the unmet need for family planning (FP) among married girls between the ages of 14 and 19 (n = 1601, 799 in intervention and 802 in control areas). The percentages of the targeted population using any modern method of contraception were significantly higher among respondents in the intervention areas than those in the control areas (72.6% versus 63.5%). The unmet need for FP was significantly lower among respondents in the intervention areas than that of the control areas (16.2% versus 20.7%). The MAG club was a well-received strategy to provide comprehensive information on FP, which in turn helped improve contraceptive method practices and reduced the unmet need for FP among married adolescent girls in urban slums in Bangladesh. The government could leverage its existing resources to expand the MAG Club model in rural parts of the country to achieve the targets outlined in its Adolescent Reproductive Health Strategy. Full article
Article
Factors Influencing Unintended Pregnancies amongst Adolescent Girls and Young Women in Cambodia
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(20), 4006; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16204006 - 19 Oct 2019
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 1915
Abstract
Background: Unintended pregnancies in Cambodian youth are a major reproductive health concern with detrimental personal and socioeconomic consequences. A social ecological model was used to identify sociodemographic factors potentially associated with unintended pregnancies, and an analysis of data from the 2014 Cambodian Demographic [...] Read more.
Background: Unintended pregnancies in Cambodian youth are a major reproductive health concern with detrimental personal and socioeconomic consequences. A social ecological model was used to identify sociodemographic factors potentially associated with unintended pregnancies, and an analysis of data from the 2014 Cambodian Demographic and Health Survey was used to determine associations. Methods: Weighted data were analysed using multiple logistic regression analyses for 3406 Cambodian sexually active single, in union or married females aged 15–29 years. Results: The prevalence of unintended pregnancy was 12.3%. Unintended pregnancy was significantly associated with younger age groups (15–24 years), multiparity, history of abortion, and current use of modern contraceptive methods. All women had an increased likelihood of unintended pregnancy when the husband alone or someone else in the household made decisions about their access to healthcare. Conclusion: The burden of unintended pregnancies is associated with young age, multiparity, history of abortions, unemployment, and low autonomy for accessing healthcare. Multi-pronged, holistic reproductive and sexual health program interventions are needed to increase literacy and accessibility to modern contraception and to raise awareness about women’s health and status in Cambodia. Full article
Article
Mothers’ Subjective Well-Being after Having a Second Child in Current China: A Case Study of Xi’an City
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(20), 3823; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16203823 - 10 Oct 2019
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1833
Abstract
The introduction of the two-child family planning policy in China calls for a study of the response of mothers’ subjective well-being after the birth of a second child. Generally focusing on Western countries, previous studies suggested that a series of factors could influence [...] Read more.
The introduction of the two-child family planning policy in China calls for a study of the response of mothers’ subjective well-being after the birth of a second child. Generally focusing on Western countries, previous studies suggested that a series of factors could influence the response, but insufficient attention has been paid to the relative importance of these factors so far. Based on survey data from mothers of two children in the Xi’an metropolitan area, Shaanxi Province, China, our study indicates that the important factors associated with mothers’ life satisfaction after having a second child were, in general, common to Western countries and China. There were also two factors somewhat unique to China: positive adjustment (i.e., becoming happier) by firstborn children (average age, 6 years old) following a sibling’s birth, predicted enhanced life satisfaction for mothers; additionally, mothers who had both a son and a daughter reported the highest increase in life satisfaction, while mothers who had two sons reported the lowest increase. Socioenvironmental constraints (i.e., parenting pressure and work–family conflict) had a larger association with mothers’ life satisfaction than individual ideational factors (e.g., family orientation and fertility desire). These findings suggest that fertility-friendly policies and convenient family intervention institutions are needed to alleviate potential undesirable consequences and improve maternal life quality following a second childbirth so that the two-child policy can be a success. Full article
Article
Unmet Need for Family Planning among Urban and Rural Married Women in Yangon Region, Myanmar—a Cross-Sectional Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(19), 3742; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16193742 - 04 Oct 2019
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1972
Abstract
Despite increasing contraceptive use and prevalence, many women who want to avoid or delay pregnancy are not using contraceptives. This results in unintended pregnancies, which increases the risk of unsafe abortions. This study aimed to explore the extent of the unmet need for [...] Read more.
Despite increasing contraceptive use and prevalence, many women who want to avoid or delay pregnancy are not using contraceptives. This results in unintended pregnancies, which increases the risk of unsafe abortions. This study aimed to explore the extent of the unmet need for family planning (FP) among urban and rural married women in Myanmar and their demand for and satisfaction with FP. A cross-sectional survey using adapted Demographic and Health surveys questions was conducted in south and north Yangon from September 2016 to November 2016. A total of 1100 currently married women of 18–49 years participated. The contraceptive prevalence was 67.2% in total, 63% urban, and 70% rural. About 19.4% (95% CI: 16.7%–22.4%) of the studied women had an unmet need for FP, significantly higher in urban than rural women (22.6% versus 16.6%). Rural women also showed significant lesser odds (adjusted OR: 0.63; 95% CI: 0.461–0.849) of unmet need than the urban counterparts. About 86% of the women had demand for contraception and 77% of them satisfied their demand. The study population revealed a fairly good contraceptive coverage; however, a considerable proportion of women had an unmet need for FP, especially the urban women. The demand for contraception is increasing, and contraceptive services need to expand coverage to marginalized groups in order to reduce the risk of unsafe abortions. Full article
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Article
Adequacy of Nutrients Intake among Jordanian Pregnant Women in Comparison to Dietary Reference Intakes
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(18), 3440; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16183440 - 17 Sep 2019
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 1659
Abstract
Objective: Maternal nutrition is considered an important pillar in the pregnancy outcomes for both mother and infant. A mother’s malnutrition and inadequate nutrient intake is associated with many undesirable pregnancy outcomes. Hence, assessing the nutritional status of the mother in the early stages [...] Read more.
Objective: Maternal nutrition is considered an important pillar in the pregnancy outcomes for both mother and infant. A mother’s malnutrition and inadequate nutrient intake is associated with many undesirable pregnancy outcomes. Hence, assessing the nutritional status of the mother in the early stages of the pregnancy and preventing any inadequacy can preclude many health problems for both mother and infant. Therefore, this study aimed to assess the adequacy of nutrient intakes among Jordanian pregnant women as compared to their corresponding dietary reference intakes (DRIs). Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted at a major University Hospital in Jordan. Three hundred pregnant women were invited to participate in the study and 286 agreed to participate. Fifty pregnant women were enrolled at week 9, then 96 pregnant women were at week 20 and 137 pregnant women were at week 30 of pregnancy. The participants completed the interview-based demographic questionnaire, pregnancy physical activity questionnaire, and quantitative food frequency questionnaire (FFQ). Results: The mean energy intake was 2768.9 ± 767.8 kcal/day and it was significantly higher in the 3rd trimester (p < 0.05). Women in the 3rd trimester consumed significantly more protein, carbohydrates, and sugar than women in the 1st and 2nd trimesters (p < 0.05). The pregnant women in the 3rd trimester consumed more sodium than women in the 1st and 2nd trimesters (p < 0.05). The vitamin K intake was significantly (p = 0.045) lower in the 2nd trimester than the 1st and 3rd trimesters. The calcium intake was significantly higher in the 3rd trimester than the 1st and 2nd trimesters (p = 0.021). The total micronutrient (vitamins B1, B2, B3, B6, B12, and D, calcium, and iron) intakes derived from dietary supplements and food sources throughout the 3 trimesters was significantly higher in the 3rd trimester than the 1st and 2nd trimesters (p < 0.05). The vitamin D, calcium, and iron intakes had the most significant increases between the 1st and 3rd trimesters (p < 0.001), while folic acid intake was significantly higher in the 1st trimester than the 2nd and 3rd trimester (p < 0.001). Most women exceeded the tolerable upper intake level (UL) for sodium in all trimesters, while 82% of women exceeded the UL of folic acid in the 1st trimester and from the supplement, not the diet. Conclusion: While the intake of some nutrients from food alone remains below the DRIs in the diets of pregnant women, the intake of other nutrients is above the UL. Raising the awareness of pregnant women about their diet and how a supplement intake can reduce the risk of inadequate intake for many micronutrients and improve their pregnancy outcomes is of great importance. Full article
Article
Psychosocial Profile and Reproductive Decisions of Women Undergoing Pregnancy Termination for Medical Reasons—A Cross-Sectional Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(18), 3413; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16183413 - 14 Sep 2019
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1630
Abstract
Background: The study aims to define the profile of women who decide to exercise their right to terminate a pregnancy and their future reproductive plans. Methods: Patients found eligible for termination for medical reasons between 2014 and 2016 were asked to complete an [...] Read more.
Background: The study aims to define the profile of women who decide to exercise their right to terminate a pregnancy and their future reproductive plans. Methods: Patients found eligible for termination for medical reasons between 2014 and 2016 were asked to complete an anonymous survey consisting of sixty questions examining the determinants of the decision to terminate a pregnancy. In total, 150 completed surveys were returned (62.5%). Results: Environmental factors, such as age, education, place of residence, marital status and financial status did not affect the decision-making process. The majority of the respondents were females under 35 years of age (71.3%). In most cases, the pregnancies had been planned and long-awaited (62.7%). The study also indicated that 22.6% of the patients who had been against abortion changed their mind when they encountered problems themselves. In addition, 20% of them changed their views on the acceptability of abortion. Termination had an impact on the participants future reproductive plans. Eighteen percent of the patients said they were definitely not planning more pregnancies. The majority (84.09%) of these women said that the reason was the traumatic experiences related to their pregnancy. Conclusions: The personal experience of a pregnancy termination procedure changed women’s opinions about pregnancy termination and modified further reproductive plans. Full article
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Article
Universal or Targeted Antenatal Care for Immigrant Women? Mapping and Qualitative Analysis of Practices in Denmark
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(18), 3396; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16183396 - 13 Sep 2019
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1478
Abstract
Inequity in immigrants’ health during pregnancy and childbirth has been shown. We studied the Danish regional organization of public midwifery-based antenatal care (ANC) for immigrant women to assess the strengths and weaknesses of organizing ANC as either universal or immigrant-targeted. A telephone survey [...] Read more.
Inequity in immigrants’ health during pregnancy and childbirth has been shown. We studied the Danish regional organization of public midwifery-based antenatal care (ANC) for immigrant women to assess the strengths and weaknesses of organizing ANC as either universal or immigrant-targeted. A telephone survey in 2012 to all the Danish maternity wards (n = 20) was conducted. Semi-structured interviews with midwives providing targeted care (n = 6) were undertaken and characteristics of care were qualitatively analyzed, having the immigrant density of the facilities, the Danish ANC policy, and theories of cultural competence as the frame of reference. Six maternity wards were providing immigrant-targeted ANC. Targeted care implied longer consultations and increased attention to the individual needs of immigrant women. At these facilities, navigation in the health care system, body awareness, and use of interpreter services were key topics. The selection of women for targeted care was based on criteria (including names) that risk stigmatizing immigrant women. The arguments for not providing targeted care included that immigrant-targeted care was considered stigmatizing. Current universal care may overlook the needs of immigrant women and contribute to inequities. A strategy could be to improve dynamic cultural competencies of midwives, interpreter services, and flexibility of the care provision of the universal ANC system. Full article
Article
Changes in the Prevalence of Induced Abortion in the Floating Population in Major Cities of China 2007–2014
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(18), 3305; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16183305 - 09 Sep 2019
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1286
Abstract
Objective: Our aim was to assess the changes in induced abortion in different migrant groups in China between 2007 and 2014 and the contraceptive methods used prior to induced abortion. Methods: The studies of two population-based cross sections were conducted in urban China, [...] Read more.
Objective: Our aim was to assess the changes in induced abortion in different migrant groups in China between 2007 and 2014 and the contraceptive methods used prior to induced abortion. Methods: The studies of two population-based cross sections were conducted in urban China, involving 9146 sexually active migrant women. Within the selected sociodemographic subgroups, the changes in the percentage of women who had induced abortions, the proportion of pregnancies ending in induced abortions, the causes of induced abortions, and the methods of contraception were identified. A chi-squared test was used to calculate the differences in induced abortion in the subgroups. Results: Between 2007 and 2014, in the study groups from the major cities of China, the percentage of sexually active migrant women who had induced abortions increased 10.1%, from 21.8% to 24.0%. The proportion of pregnancies ending in induced abortions increased 23.7%, from 21.5% to 26.6%. Both of the aforementioned statistics increased significantly within most of the selected sociodemographic subgroups, especially in the 18–19 and 45–49 age groups. Over 50% of pregnancies were aborted in the cohabiting group, although this figure declined by 12.3% over the course of the seven-year study period. Contraceptive failure was the primary cause of induced abortion, although its contribution to induced abortion declined from 51.3% to 42.4%. The proportion of women not using contraception prior to induced abortion increased from 30.9% to 41.2%. Conclusion: The prevalence of induced abortion is high and continues to increase among sexually active migrant women in China. An increasing trend is forecasted over the next few decades. Special attention should be paid to the younger cohort of migrant women, especially 18–19-year-olds, and unmarried cohabitants, who are increasingly seeking induced abortions. Full article
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Article
The Role of Culture in Maintaining Post-Partum Sexual Abstinence of Swazi Women
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(14), 2590; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16142590 - 20 Jul 2019
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1673
Abstract
Eswatini is one of the countries in the African continent where post-partum sexual abstinence is practiced. Beside scarcity of research exploring sexual abstinence in Eswatini, there are only a few studies that explore post-partum abstinence across HIV-positive and negative women in sub-Saharan Africa. [...] Read more.
Eswatini is one of the countries in the African continent where post-partum sexual abstinence is practiced. Beside scarcity of research exploring sexual abstinence in Eswatini, there are only a few studies that explore post-partum abstinence across HIV-positive and negative women in sub-Saharan Africa. The study explored the practice of post-partum sexual abstinence in Swazi women and examined how cultural beliefs influence and promotes the perpetuation of the practice. The study population consisted of post-partum women who were selected, using purposive sampling. Thematic approach was used for data analysis. Despite feeling that the period for post-partum, sexual abstinence was long; the participants adhered to the practice as prescribed by their culture. Nevertheless, they felt that the practice is imposed on women only because while they are observing post-partum abstinence, their partners get to sleep with other sexual partners. They raised concerns that the practice increases the risk of acquiring HIV and sexually transmitted infections. There is an element of coercion to the practice of post-partum abstinence, the myths and misconceptions around the early resumption of sexual intercourse forces the practice on women. At the family and community level, the discussions to change the way sexual abstinence is viewed and practiced are crucial. Full article
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Article
The Use of Disposable Tampons as Visual Biofeedback in Pelvic Floor Muscle Training
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(12), 2143; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16122143 - 17 Jun 2019
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1866
Abstract
Background: Urinary incontinence represents a complex problem which commonly affects women and influences their physical, mental and social wellbeing. The objective was to determine the effect of pelvic floor muscle training using a tampon as visual biofeedback. Methods: A non-randomized clinical [...] Read more.
Background: Urinary incontinence represents a complex problem which commonly affects women and influences their physical, mental and social wellbeing. The objective was to determine the effect of pelvic floor muscle training using a tampon as visual biofeedback. Methods: A non-randomized clinical trial involving 60 women >18 years of age, both with, and without, urinary incontinence. All women exercised with a program involving visual biofeedback using disposable tampons at home for three months. The compliance rate was 76.8 ± 24.1 An electromyographic assessment of the pelvic floor was performed and assessments of the impact of the exercise program. Results: 54.5% of women without incontinence and 81.6% of women incontinence reported improvements (p = 0.041). In both groups, there was increased quality life (p > 0.05). The women without incontinence experienced greater improvement in the quality of their sexual relations (Pre 6.8 ± 1.4–Post 7.2 ± 1.0). Conclusions: After the intervention, a high percentage of women showed a statistically significant improvement in their symptoms. The participants reported an increase in quality of life and the women without incontinence reported an improvement in quality of their sexual relations. Our findings suggest that visual BFB for training the PFM may be beneficial for women with or without incontinence. Full article
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Article
Maternal Body Mass Index and Gestational Weight Gain and Their Association with Pregnancy Complications and Perinatal Conditions
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(10), 1751; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16101751 - 17 May 2019
Cited by 31 | Viewed by 2866
Abstract
This study aimed to evaluate the impact of selected pregnancy pathologies statistically depending on overweight/obesity and excessive maternal weight gain during pregnancy on women who gave birth in the years 2013–2015 at the Second Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics at the University Hospital [...] Read more.
This study aimed to evaluate the impact of selected pregnancy pathologies statistically depending on overweight/obesity and excessive maternal weight gain during pregnancy on women who gave birth in the years 2013–2015 at the Second Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics at the University Hospital in Bratislava, Slovakia. In a retrospective study, we analyzed data gathered from the sample, which consisted of 7122 women. Our results suggest a statistically significant, higher risk for the groups of women with overweight and obesity and gestational hypertension (adjusted odds ratio (AOR) = 15.3; 95% CI 9.0−25.8 for obesity), preeclampsia (AOR = 3.4; 95% CI 1.9−6.0 for overweight and AOR = 13.2; 95% CI 7.7−22.5 for obesity), and gestational diabetes mellitus (AOR = 1.9; 95% CI 1.2−2.9 for overweight and AOR = 2.4; 95% CI 1.4−4.0 for obesity). A higher incidence of pregnancies terminated by cesarean section was observed in the group of obese women. Gestational weight gain above IOM (Institute of Medicine) recommendations was associated with a higher risk of pregnancy terminated by C-section (AOR = 1.2; 95% CI 1.0−1.3), gestational hypertension (AOR = 1.7; 95% CI 1.0−2.7), and infant macrosomia (AOR = 1.7; 95% CI 1.3−2.1). Overweight and obesity during pregnancy significantly contribute to the development of pregnancy pathologies and increased incidence of cesarean section. Systematic efforts to reduce weight before pregnancy through prepregnancy dietary counseling, regular physical activity, and healthy lifestyle should be the primary goal. Full article
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Article
Can Forum Play Contribute to Counteracting Abuse in Health Care? A Pilot Intervention Study in Sri Lanka
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(9), 1616; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16091616 - 08 May 2019
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 1700
Abstract
Obstetric violence refers to the mistreatment of women in pregnancy and childbirth care by their health providers. It is linked to poor quality of care, lack of trust in health systems, and adverse maternal and neonatal outcomes. Evidence of interventions to reduce and [...] Read more.
Obstetric violence refers to the mistreatment of women in pregnancy and childbirth care by their health providers. It is linked to poor quality of care, lack of trust in health systems, and adverse maternal and neonatal outcomes. Evidence of interventions to reduce and prevent obstetric violence is limited. We developed a training intervention using a participatory theatre technique called Forum Play inspired by the Theatre of the Oppressed for health providers in Sri Lanka. This paper assesses the potential of the training method to increase staff awareness of obstetric violence and promote taking action to reduce or prevent it. We conducted four workshops with 20 physicians and 30 nurses working in three hospitals in Colombo, Sri Lanka. Participants completed a questionnaire before and three-to-four months after the intervention. At follow-up, participants more often reported that they had been involved in situations of obstetric violence, indicating new knowledge of the phenomenon and/or an increase in their ability to conceptualise it. The intervention appears promising for improving the abilities of health care providers to recognise obstetric violence, the first step in counteracting it. The study demonstrates the value of developing further studies to assess the longitudinal impacts of theatre-based training interventions to reduce obstetric violence and, ultimately, improve patient care. Full article
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Article
Long-Acting Reversible Contraception Uptake and Associated Factors among Women of Reproductive Age in Rural Kenya
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(9), 1543; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16091543 - 01 May 2019
Cited by 17 | Viewed by 2639
Abstract
In the last two decades, the use of short-acting methods of contraception has driven the increase of contraceptive use in Kenya. We assessed the factors associated with uptake of long-acting reversible contraception by women seeking family planning services in public health facilities in [...] Read more.
In the last two decades, the use of short-acting methods of contraception has driven the increase of contraceptive use in Kenya. We assessed the factors associated with uptake of long-acting reversible contraception by women seeking family planning services in public health facilities in Kakamega County, Kenya. A mixed methods cross-sectional study through client exit surveys among 423 women seeking family planning services was done at 12 public health facilities in Kakamega County. Twelve in-depth interviews with health care providers from the study facilities further explored practices in provision of long-acting reversible contraception (LARC). Among women initiating contraceptive use, LARC method utilization was 20.6%. Women’s tertiary education level, Protestant Christian religion, age at first birth, and having no desire for more children were significantly associated with utilization of LARC. Structural factors including shortage of human resource, provider bias and lack of adequate skills on provision of services were identified as key barriers to uptake of long-acting reversible contraception services. Full article
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Article
Metabolite Changes in Maternal and Fetal Plasma Following Spontaneous Labour at Term in Humans Using Untargeted Metabolomics Analysis: A Pilot Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(9), 1527; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16091527 - 30 Apr 2019
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1687
Abstract
The mechanism of human labour remains poorly understood, limiting our ability to manage complications of parturition such as preterm labour and induction of labour. In this study we have investigated the effect of labour on plasma metabolites immediately following delivery, comparing cord and [...] Read more.
The mechanism of human labour remains poorly understood, limiting our ability to manage complications of parturition such as preterm labour and induction of labour. In this study we have investigated the effect of labour on plasma metabolites immediately following delivery, comparing cord and maternal plasma taken from women who laboured spontaneously and delivered vaginally with women who were delivered via elective caesarean section and did not labour. Samples were analysed using ultra high-performance liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. Welch’s two-sample t-test was used to identify any significant differences. Of 826 metabolites measured, 26.9% (222/826) were significantly altered in maternal plasma and 21.1% (174/826) in cord plasma. Labour involves changes in many maternal organs and poses acute metabolic demands in the uterus and in the fetus and these are reflected in our results. While a proportion of these differences are likely to be secondary to the physiological demands of labour itself, these results present a comprehensive picture of the metabolome in the maternal and fetal circulations at the time of delivery and can be used to guide future studies. We discuss potential causal pathways for labour including endocannabinoids, ceramides, sphingolipids and steroids. Further work is necessary to confirm the specific pathways involved in the spontaneous onset of labour. Full article
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Article
Distribution and Dietary Predictors of Urinary Phthalate Metabolites among Pregnant Women in Shanghai, China
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(8), 1366; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16081366 - 16 Apr 2019
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 1738
Abstract
The exposure of pregnant women to phthalates is a major concern due to their adverse effect on developmental outcomes. Diet is an important pathway for exposure to phthalate compounds. Nevertheless, studies on dietary exposure of pregnant women to phthalates in China are limited. [...] Read more.
The exposure of pregnant women to phthalates is a major concern due to their adverse effect on developmental outcomes. Diet is an important pathway for exposure to phthalate compounds. Nevertheless, studies on dietary exposure of pregnant women to phthalates in China are limited. We aimed to assess the distribution and dietary predictors of phthalate exposure among pregnant women in China. We measured the levels of 10 urinary phthalate metabolites using high-performance liquid chromatography coupled with tandem mass spectrometry in 210 pregnant women as part of the 2015 China National Chronic Disease and Nutrition Survey in Shanghai. We assessed the urinary specific gravity-adjusted phthalate metabolite levels along with potential demographic and dietary predictors. Multivariable linear regression analysis was used to examine the relationship between each potential demographic variable and dietary predictor and urinary phthalate metabolites. Seven urinary phthalate metabolites were detected in >95% of pregnant women. The geometric mean (GM) of urinary phthalate biomarker values were highest for monobutyl phthalate (GM: 25.29 ng/mL) and monoisobutyl phthalate (GM:11.18 ng/mL). Multivariate regression analysis indicated that a lower educational level was associated with elevated urinary phthalate metabolite levels. Edible seaweed consumption had a positive correlation with urinary monoethyl phthalate and monoisobutyl phthalate levels, and the total molar sum of Di-(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate metabolites. These findings offer important data on the dietary exposure to phthalates in pregnant Chinese women and suggest interventions to improve food safety. Full article
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Article
Prevent Mother-to-Child Transmission (PMTCT) Programs and Enhancement of Maternal Healthcare Infrastructure to Improve Early Detection of Maternal Syphilis in Shanghai, China
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 1002; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16061002 - 20 Mar 2019
Viewed by 1365
Abstract
This study aimed to compare the screening and diagnosis of maternal syphilis in Shanghai between the national and municipal prevent mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) of syphilis policies, and then to assess whether PMTCT programs and enhancing healthcare infrastructure could bring about an early detection [...] Read more.
This study aimed to compare the screening and diagnosis of maternal syphilis in Shanghai between the national and municipal prevent mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) of syphilis policies, and then to assess whether PMTCT programs and enhancing healthcare infrastructure could bring about an early detection of maternal syphilis. Detection of maternal syphilis was initiated in 2001 and then scaled-up in 2011 along with the enhancement of antenatal healthcare infrastructure. The initial five-year periods of municipal and national PMTCT policies were defined as the “exploring period” (2002–2006) and the “comprehensive period” (2011–2015). The demographic and gestational weeks (GW) of syphilis screening and diagnosis were analyzed to identify the factors affecting early detection. During the study period, maternal syphilis screening increased from 83,718 in 2002 to 243,432 in 2015. Of the 1,894,062 pregnant women screened, 1526 and 2714 participants were diagnosed with maternal syphilis in 2002–2006 and 2011–2015, respectively. The average age of diagnosis was 28.36 years and non-residents accounted for 71.1%. In the comprehensive period, more women received early syphilis screening (14.0% vs. 10.8%) and diagnosis (13.3% vs. 7.3%) within 12 GWs compared with the exploring period. Significantly, early detection grew during 2011–2015, which was not seen in the exploring period. Multivariate analysis revealed a greater possibility for infected women to be diagnosed within 16 GWs (OR = 2.76) in the comprehensive period, but those who were non-residents and unemployed were less likely to receive early detection. In conclusion, early detection of maternal syphilis has been remarkably improved. More emphasis is required on the development of pro-vulnerable policies and the implementation of tailored health education to improve the accessibility of routine antenatal care and awareness of syphilis prevention. Full article
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Article
Policymakers’ Perspectives Towards Developing a Guideline to Inform Policy on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder: A Qualitative Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 945; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16060945 - 15 Mar 2019
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2070
Abstract
Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) has a high prevalence in South Africa, especially among the poor socioeconomic communities. However, there is no specific policy to address FASD. Using a qualitative study design, we explored the perspectives of policymakers on guidelines/policies for FASD, current [...] Read more.
Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) has a high prevalence in South Africa, especially among the poor socioeconomic communities. However, there is no specific policy to address FASD. Using a qualitative study design, we explored the perspectives of policymakers on guidelines/policies for FASD, current practices and interventions, and what practices and interventions could be included in a policy for FASD. The data analysis was done using the Framework Method. Applying a working analytical framework to the data, we found that there is no specific policy for FASD in South Africa, however, clauses of FASD policy exist in other policy documents. Preventive services for women and screening, identification, assessment, and support for children are some of the current practices. Nevertheless, a multi-sectoral collaboration and streamlined program for the prevention and management of FASD are aspects that should be included in the policy. While there are generic clauses in existing relevant policy documents, which could be attributed to the prevention and management of FASD, these clauses have not been effective in preventing and managing the disorder. Therefore, a specific policy to foster a holistic and coordinated approach to prevent and manage FASD needs to be developed. Full article
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Article
Impact of Socio-Economic Factors and Health Information Sources on Place of Birth in Sindh Province, Pakistan: A Secondary Analysis of Cross-Sectional Survey Data
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(6), 932; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16060932 - 15 Mar 2019
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1878
Abstract
Medical facility birth with skilled birth attendance is essential to reduce maternal mortality. The purpose of this study was to assess the demographic characteristics, socio-economic factors, and varied health information sources that may influence the uptake of birth services in Pakistan. We used [...] Read more.
Medical facility birth with skilled birth attendance is essential to reduce maternal mortality. The purpose of this study was to assess the demographic characteristics, socio-economic factors, and varied health information sources that may influence the uptake of birth services in Pakistan. We used pooled data from Maternal-Child Health Program Indicator Survey 2013 and 2014. Study population was 9719 women. Generalized linear model with log link and a Poisson distribution was used to identify factors associated with place of birth. 3403 (35%) women gave birth at home, and 6316 (65%) women gave birth at a medical facility. After controlling for all covariates, women’s age, number of children, education, wealth, and mother and child health information source (doctors and nurses/midwives) were associated with facility births. Women were significantly less likely to give birth at a medical facility if they received maternal-child health information from low-level health workers or relatives/friends. The findings suggest that interventions should target disadvantaged and vulnerable groups of women after considering rural-urban differences. Training non-health professionals may help improve facility birth. Further research is needed to examine the effect of individual information sources on facility birth, both in urban and rural areas in Pakistan. Full article
Article
Anti-Müllerian Hormone Gene Polymorphism is Associated with Clinical Pregnancy of Fresh IVF Cycles
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(5), 841; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16050841 - 08 Mar 2019
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1342
Abstract
The aim of this study was to examine the effects of single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the anti-Müllerian hormone (AMH) and AMH type II receptor (AMHRII) genes on in vitro fertilization (IVF) outcomes. In this prospective cohort study, we genotyped the AMH 146 T [...] Read more.
The aim of this study was to examine the effects of single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the anti-Müllerian hormone (AMH) and AMH type II receptor (AMHRII) genes on in vitro fertilization (IVF) outcomes. In this prospective cohort study, we genotyped the AMH 146 T > G, AMHRII −482 A > G and AMHRII IVS1 +149 T > A variants in 635 women undergoing their first cycle of controlled ovarian stimulation for IVF. DNA was extracted from the peripheral blood of all participants, and the SNPs were genotyped by real-time polymerase chain reaction. The distributions, frequencies of genes, and correlation with clinical pregnancy of IVF were analyzed. The AMH 146 T > G G/G genotype in women was associated with a lower clinical pregnancy rate (T/T: 55.0%, T/G: 51.8%, G/G: 40.0%; p < 0.05). Women with the AMH 146 T > G GG genotype were half as likely to have a clinical pregnancy compared with women with TT genotypes (OR = 0.55, 95% CI: 0.34–0.88, p = 0.014). With multivariate analysis, the AMH 146 T > G GG genotype remains as a significant independent factor to predict clinical pregnancy (p = 0.014). No significant difference was found between AMHRII polymorphisms and clinical pregnancy outcomes of IVF. In conclusion, our results show that AMH 146 T > G seems to be a susceptibility biomarker capable of predicting IVF pregnancy outcomes. Further studies should focus on the mechanism of these associations and the inclusion of other ethnic populations to confirm the findings of this study. Full article
Review
Management of Endocrinopathies in Pregnancy: A Review of Current Evidence
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(5), 781; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16050781 - 04 Mar 2019
Cited by 16 | Viewed by 3106
Abstract
Pregnancy in women with associated endocrine conditions is a therapeutic challenge for clinicians. These disorders may be common, such us thyroid disorders and diabetes, or rare, including adrenal and parathyroid disease and pituitary dysfunction. With the development of assisted reproductive techniques, the number [...] Read more.
Pregnancy in women with associated endocrine conditions is a therapeutic challenge for clinicians. These disorders may be common, such us thyroid disorders and diabetes, or rare, including adrenal and parathyroid disease and pituitary dysfunction. With the development of assisted reproductive techniques, the number of pregnancies with these conditions has increased. It is necessary to recognize symptoms and correct diagnosis for a proper pharmacotherapeutic management in order to avoid adverse side effects both in mother and fetus. This review summarizes the pharmacotherapy of these clinical situations in order to reduce maternal and fetal morbidity. Full article
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Article
Trends and Determinants of Antenatal Care Service Use in Ethiopia between 2000 and 2016
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(5), 748; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16050748 - 01 Mar 2019
Cited by 23 | Viewed by 2482
Abstract
Antenatal care (ANC) services are an essential intervention for improving maternal and child health worldwide. In Ethiopia, however, ANC service use has been suboptimal, and examining the trends and factors associated with ANC service use is needed to inform targeted maternal health care [...] Read more.
Antenatal care (ANC) services are an essential intervention for improving maternal and child health worldwide. In Ethiopia, however, ANC service use has been suboptimal, and examining the trends and factors associated with ANC service use is needed to inform targeted maternal health care interventions. This study aimed to investigate the trends and determinants of ANC service utilisation in Ethiopia for the period ranging from 2000 to 2016. This study draws on the Ethiopia Demographic and Health Survey data for the years 2000 (n = 7928), 2005 (n = 7276), 2011 (n = 7881) and 2016 (n = 7558) to estimate the trends in ANC service utilisation. Multivariate logistic regression models with adjustment for clustering and sampling weights were used to investigate the association between the study factors and ANC service utilisation. Over the sixteen-year period, the proportion of Ethiopian women who received the recommended four or more ANC visits increased from 10.0% (95% confidence interval (95% CI: 8.7–12.5%) in 2000 to 32.0% (95% CI: 29.4–34.3%) in 2016. Similarly, the proportion of women who received one to three ANC visits increased from 27.0% (95% CI: 23.6–30.7%) in 2000 to 62.0% in 2016 (95% CI: 60.4–67.3%). Multivariate analyses showed that higher maternal and paternal education, higher household wealth status, urban residency and previous use of a contraceptive were associated with ANC service use (1–3 and 4+ ANC visits). The study suggests that while Ethiopian pregnant women’s engagement with ANC services improved during the millennium development goal era (2000–2015), recommended ANC use remains suboptimal. Improving the utilisation of ANC services among pregnant women is essential in Ethiopia, and efforts should focus on vulnerable women. Full article
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Article
Women’s Experience of Facility-Based Childbirth Care and Receipt of an Early Postnatal Check for Herself and Her Newborn in Northwestern Tanzania
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(3), 481; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16030481 - 07 Feb 2019
Cited by 15 | Viewed by 2663
Abstract
Negative experiences of care may act as a deterrent to current and/or future utilization of facility-based health services. To examine the situation in Tanzania, we conducted a sub-analysis of a cross-sectional household survey conducted in April 2016 in the Mara and Kagera regions [...] Read more.
Negative experiences of care may act as a deterrent to current and/or future utilization of facility-based health services. To examine the situation in Tanzania, we conducted a sub-analysis of a cross-sectional household survey conducted in April 2016 in the Mara and Kagera regions of Tanzania. The sample included 732 women aged 15–49 years who had given birth in a health facility during the previous two years. Log binomial regression models were used to investigate the association between women’s experiences of care during childbirth and the receipt of early postnatal checks before discharge. Overall, 73.1% of women reported disrespect and abuse, 60.1% were offered a birth companion, 29.1% had a choice of birth position, and 85.5% rated facility cleanliness as good. About half of mothers (46.3%) and newborns (51.4%) received early postnatal checks before discharge. Early postnatal checks for both mothers and newborns were associated with no disrespect and abuse (RR: 1.23 and 1.14, respectively) and facility cleanliness (RR: 1.29 and 1.54, respectively). Early postnatal checks for mothers were also associated with choice of birth position (RR: 1.18). The results suggest that a missed opportunity in providing an early postnatal check is an indication of poor quality of the continuum of care for mothers and newborns. Improved quality of care at one stage can predict better care in subsequent stages. Full article
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Article
Effectiveness of a Novel Continuous Doppler (Moyo) Versus Intermittent Doppler in Intrapartum Detection of Abnormal Foetal Heart Rate: A Randomised Controlled Study in Tanzania
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(3), 315; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16030315 - 24 Jan 2019
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2230
Abstract
Background: Intrapartum foetal heart rate (FHR) monitoring is crucial for identification of hypoxic foetuses and subsequent interventions. We compared continuous monitoring using a novel nine-crystal FHR monitor (Moyo) versus intermittent single crystal Doppler (Doppler) for the detection of abnormal FHR. Methods: [...] Read more.
Background: Intrapartum foetal heart rate (FHR) monitoring is crucial for identification of hypoxic foetuses and subsequent interventions. We compared continuous monitoring using a novel nine-crystal FHR monitor (Moyo) versus intermittent single crystal Doppler (Doppler) for the detection of abnormal FHR. Methods: An unmasked randomised controlled study was conducted in a tertiary hospital in Tanzania (ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT02790554). A total of 2973 low-risk singleton pregnant women in the first stage of labour admitted with normal FHR were randomised to either Moyo (n = 1479) or Doppler (1494) arms. The primary outcome was the proportion of abnormal FHR detection. Secondary outcomes were time intervals in labour, delivery mode, Apgar scores, and perinatal outcomes. Results: Moyo detected abnormal FHR more often (13.3%) compared to Doppler (9.8%) (p = 0.002). Time intervals from admission to detection of abnormal FHR were 15% shorter in Moyo (p = 0.12) and from the detection of abnormal FHR to delivery was 36% longer in Moyo (p = 0.007) compared to the Doppler arm. Time from last FHR to delivery was 12% shorter with Moyo (p = 0.006) compared to Doppler. Caesarean section rates were higher with the Moyo device compared to Doppler (p = 0.001). Low Apgar scores (<7) at the 1st and 5th min were comparable between groups (p = 0.555 and p = 0.800). Perinatal outcomes (fresh stillbirths and 24-h neonatal deaths) were comparable at delivery (p = 0.497) and 24-h post-delivery (p = 0.345). Conclusions: Abnormal FHR detection rates were higher with Moyo compared to Doppler. Moyo detected abnormal FHR earlier than Doppler, but time from detection to delivery was longer. Studies powered to detect differences in perinatal outcomes with timely responses are recommended. Full article
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Article
The Effect of Prenatal Stress, Proxied by Marital and Paternity Status, on the Risk of Preterm Birth
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(2), 273; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16020273 - 18 Jan 2019
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2094
Abstract
Uncertainty and insecurity in the relationship between the mother and father of a child are responsible for heightened maternal stress, which can lead to preterm birth (PTB). Different intensities of prenatal stress (proxied by four levels of marital status linked with the presence [...] Read more.
Uncertainty and insecurity in the relationship between the mother and father of a child are responsible for heightened maternal stress, which can lead to preterm birth (PTB). Different intensities of prenatal stress (proxied by four levels of marital status linked with the presence or absence of paternal data on birth records) were defined as the Marital-Father Data index. We assessed the impact of those varying intensities of prenatal stress on PTB with respect to parity among a group of Polish mothers residing in Krakow (N = 87,916). We found a pattern across the adjusted risk ratios (RR) of preterm birth that ordered these estimates in an increasing trend towards higher risk, beginning with the group of married mothers with father data present (baseline), through the groups of legitimizing marriages—married after conception with father data present (RR = 1.1; 95% Confidence Intervals (CI) 1.0–1.2) and unmarried mothers with father data present (RR = 1.3; 95% CI 1.2–1.5) to the group of unmarried mothers with father data absent (RR = 1.9; 95% CI 1.7–2.2). The adjusted p for the linear trend between Marital-Father Data index and PTB was less than 0.001. The adjusted effect of perceived prenatal stress differed with respect to parity (confirmed by statistically significant interactions between Marital-Father Data index levels and parity), with a higher magnitude of this effect noted among multiparous versus primiparous women. Low paternal involvement and support during pregnancy may negatively affect PTB risk and this effect may differ in relation to parity status. More attention should be paid to maternal pregnancy stress, especially of multiparous mothers, to decrease the risk of unfavorable birth outcomes. Full article
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