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Hope for the best …but expect the worst: A qualitative study to explore how women with recurrent miscarriage experience the early waiting period of a new pregnancy

Bailey, Sarah, Boivin, Jacky, Cheong, Ying, Kitson-Reynolds, Ellen, Bailey, Christopher and Macklon, Nick 2019. Hope for the best …but expect the worst: A qualitative study to explore how women with recurrent miscarriage experience the early waiting period of a new pregnancy. BMJ 9 (5) , e029354. 10.1136/bmjopen-2019-029354

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Abstract

Objective To investigate how women experience the initial period of a new pregnancy after suffering recurrent miscarriage (RM). Design A qualitative study, nested within a randomised controlled feasibility study of a coping intervention for RM, used semi-structured face-to-face interviews. Interviews were audio-recorded, transcribed verbatim and analysed using a thematic network approach. Setting Participants were recruited from the Recurrent Miscarriage Clinic and Early Pregnancy Unit in two tertiary referral hospitals in the UK. Participants 14 women with RMs and who had previously participated in the randomised controlled trial (RCT) feasibility component of the study were recruited. Results Seven organising themes emerged from the data: (1) turmoil of emotions, (2) preparing for the worst, (3) setting of personal milestones, (4) hypervigilance, (5) social isolation, (6) adoption of pragmatic approaches, (7) need for professional affirmation. Conclusions The study established that for women with a history of RM, the waiting period of a new pregnancy is a traumatic time of great uncertainty and emotional turmoil and one in which they express a need for emotional support. Consideration should be given to the manner in which supportive care is best delivered within the constraints of current health service provision.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Psychology
Publisher: BMJ Publishing Group
ISSN: 0959-8138
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 13 May 2019
Date of Acceptance: 7 May 2019
Last Modified: 19 Sep 2019 10:17
URI: http://orca.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/122332

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