Women´s experiences of fetal movements before the confirmation of fetal death: contractions misinterpreted as fetal movement
2016 (English)Conference paper, Poster (Other academic)
Background: Decreased fetal movement often precedes a stillbirth. Objectives: The objective of this study was to describe women´s experiences of fetal movement before the confirmation of fetal death. Methods: Data were collected through a Web-based questionnaire in 2009 to 2013 and women who had answered the questionnaire before September 1, 2013. Women with stillbirths after 28 gestational weeks were self-recruited. Content analysis was used to analyze the answers to one open question: “How do you remember the fetal movement during the 48 hours that preceded the diagnosis of intrauterine death?” The statements from mothers of a stillborn, born during gestational weeks 28 to 36 were compared with those of a stillborn at term. Results: The women’s 215 answers were divided into three categories: Decreased, weak, and no fetal movement at all 154 (72%); Fetal movement as normal 39 (18%) and Extremely vigorous fetal activity followed by no movement at all 22 (10%). Eight (15%) of the women with stillbirths in gestational weeks 28 to 36 interpreted contractions as fetal movement as compared to five (5%) of the women with stillbirths at term. Conclusion: Uterine contractions can be interpreted as fetal movement. A single episode of extremely vigorous fetal activity can precede fetal death. The majority of the women experienced decreased, weaker, or no fetal movement at all two days before fetal death was diagnosed. Mothers should be educated to promptly report changes in fetal movement to their health care providers. Using fetal movement information to evaluate possible fetal distress may lead to reductions in stillbirths. Funding:The Little Child´s Foundation, Sophiahemmet Foundation, The Swedish National Infant Foundation and Capo’s Research Foundation.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Medicine
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:shh:diva-2461OAI: oai:DiVA.org:shh-2461DiVA: diva2:1039676
The 2016 International Conference on Stillbirth, SIDS and Baby Survival, Montevideo, Uruguay, 8-10 september 2016