Are women psychologically prepared for the impact of ultrasound Down's syndrome screening during pregnancy?

Mane, Esmeralda (2009) Are women psychologically prepared for the impact of ultrasound Down's syndrome screening during pregnancy? BSc dissertation, University of Portsmouth.

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    Aims: The goal of this review is to critically review the existing literature that addresses the following project question: Are women psychologically prepared for the impact of prenatal ultrasound (US) Down's syndrome screening (DSS) during pregnancy? Methods: A literature search has been performed to collect information that addresses aspects of the project question. A total of 27 studies were obtained following the search and selection process of the literature. There are nine retrospective design studies and thirteen prospective design studies included. There are five secondary research articles, including four systematic and one non-systematic literature reviews. Results: Perception of ultrasound screening is overtaken by the social context of the technology and non-invasive nature of the examination, thus women express shock and increased anxiety levels if there are adverse findings during the examination. The concept of the risk calculation is difficult to comprehend by the majority of women. Risk communication interventions increases understanding and decision satisfaction. Women's knowledge is influenced by information presentation and knowledge and perception of health care professionals. Conclusions and recommendations: In general, women are unlikely to be prepared of the complex decision making and pathways of management when participating on US DSS programmes. Disparities among minor ethnic-racial and disadvantaged socioeconomic groups exist. Understanding preferences for information will assist professionals to provide culturally competent care, it will meet the needs of the diversity of women acquiring support before and after finding out that they are at a high risk to having a baby with DS. Professionals should inform women of the purpose and the potential US DSS has to detect an abnormality. Pre and post scan counselling should be provided to all women to allow them with an opportunity to voice any concerns and ask questions. This will encourage informed choice that leads to reflection, engaged thinking empowerment and active participation in decision making process if at higher risk. Further research is needed on the psychological impact of DSS, especially of women who receive false negative and false positive results.

    Item Type: Dissertation
    Departments/Research Groups: Faculty of Science > School of Health Sciences and Social Work
    Depositing User: Jane Polwin
    Date Deposited: 20 Jan 2011 12:48
    Last Modified: 28 Jan 2015 11:14

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