The impact of miscarriage on women's pregnancy-specific anxiety and feelings of prenatal maternal–fetal attachment during the course of a subsequent pregnancy: An exploratory follow-up study
AbstractThis study assesses the implications a miscarriage history has on women's pregnancy-specific anxiety and feelings of prenatal maternal–fetal attachment during the 1st and 3rd trimesters of a subsequent pregnancy. Thirty-five pregnant women ( N = 10 with a history of miscarriage) volunteered participation completing the Pregnancy Outcome Questionnaire (POQ) (1), the Maternal Antenatal Attachment Scale (MAAS) (2) and a demographic/reproductive history questionnaire during the first trimester of pregnancy. Of these, 24 participants completed the measures again during the third trimester of pregnancy. Women with a miscarriage history reported significantly higher pregnancy-specific anxiety at trimester 1 than women with no miscarriage history; even when the effects of parity were controlled. All expectant mothers, irrespective of miscarriage history, scored similarly at trimester 1 on the MAAS scales. By the 3rd trimester, pregnancy-specific anxiety had significantly decreased for women with a miscarriage history whose mean scores on the POQ were now similar to women with no history of miscarriage. Maternal–fetal attachment had significantly risen by the 3rd trimester for all women. These findings suggest that having a miscarriage history may not have a long-lasting adverse effect on woman's psychological adaptation during the course of a subsequent pregnancy.