Preterm Premature Rupture of the Membranes (PPROM): a study of patient experiences and support needs

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Abstract

Background
Preterm prelabour rupture of membranes (PPROM) is a common obstetric condition but outcomes can vary depending on gestation. Significant maternal and fetal complications occur including preterm birth, infection, abruption, cord prolapse, pulmonary hypoplasia and even death. Although the need for psychological support is recognised it is unclear how much is actually offered to women and their families. This study aimed to survey the views of women and their families who have undergone PPROM in order to understand the care and psychological burden these families face.
Methods
An online survey was conducted, recruiting women via social media with collaboration from the patient advocacy support group Little Heartbeats. Responses were collated where fields were binary or mean and standard deviations calculated. Framework analysis was used to identify and analyse themes in free text responses.
Results
180 PPROM pregnancies were described from 177 respondents. Although care was variable and respondents were from across the world there were common themes. Five themes were highlighted which were: a lack of balanced information regarding the condition, support in decision making and support with the process, specific psychological support and ongoing psychological consequences of PPROM.
Conclusion
This survey highlights areas in which care needs to be improved for women with PPROM. Previous studies have shown that providing good care during the antenatal period reduces long term psychological morbidity for the whole family. The need for support, with regard both to information provided to women and their families and their psychological support needs to be addressed urgently.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Reproductive and Infant Psychology
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 30 Jan 2024

Keywords

  • Preterm prelabour rupture of membranes; preterm birth; perinatal; mental health; psychological support

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