Meeting the needs of parents after a stillbirth or neonatal death

V. Flenady, F. Boyle, L. Koopmans, T. Wilson, W. Stones, J. Cacciatore

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

62 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The death of a child around the time of birth is highly contradictory to the ‘natural order’ of life, and has profound effects on parents and families. Shock, anger, emptiness, helplessness and loneliness are common responses for mothers and fathers. Even in high‐income settings, where support services are more likely to be available, approximately one in five parents whose baby dies at or soon after birth will display intense and enduring grief following the loss.1-3 Maternal distress from the loss of a baby can exert intergenerational consequences, affecting the family constellation for surviving children as well as carrying over into a subsequent pregnancy.2 Families suffer disruption to family relationships and substantial economic burden.2 In the USA perinatal and child death is conservatively estimated to cost about $1.5 billion per year with the global costs likely to far exceed this figure.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)137-140
Number of pages4
JournalBJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology
Volume121
Issue numbers4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 18 Sep 2014

Keywords

  • mothers
  • grief

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