Year of Publication

2015

Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice

Committee Chair

Dr. Carolyn Williams

Clinical Mentor

Dr. Kristin Ashford

Committee Member

Dr. Sharon Lock

Abstract

Although there is an abundance of literature on the topics of prenatal anxiety, stress, depression, etc. during pregnancy, very little research has been conducted on the impact of prenatal anxiety on cesarean delivery and the studies which have been conducted have resulted in conflicting results. This study focused on prenatal anxiety in a clinical population, the characteristics of participants with reported high anxiety, and its association with cesarean deliveries. Prenatal anxiety was defined as Spielberger’s state anxiety and measured with the STAI. Data was collected over all three trimesters of pregnancy and post-delivery. The characteristics of participants who reported high anxiety were compared to those with low anxiety, and the association between high anxiety and cesarean deliveries was determined. Prenatal anxiety is an issue that nurses are interested in for several reasons: it is a patient condition which impacts the patient’s quality of life and in some cases ability to function at full capacity, it may contribute to poor pregnancy outcomes and it is something that is amenable to change.

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