Women's desires for mental health support following a pregnancy loss, termination of pregnancy for medical reasons, or abortion: A report from the STRONG Women Study

Colleen Doyle, Mambo Che, Zhanni Lu, Michelle Roesler, Karin Larsen, Lindsay A. Williams

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective: We report on women's mental health care desires following a miscarriage, medical termination, or abortion. Method: 689 women completed a questionnaire on reproductive history, health care following miscarriage/medical termination/abortion, and current mental health. Descriptive statistics and logistic regression analyses examined: miscarriage/termination/abortion incidence, desires for mental health support following miscarriages/terminations/abortions, and current mental health. Results: Of 365 women with a pregnancy history, 37% reported ≥1 miscarriage, 9% ≥1 medical termination, 16% ≥1 abortion, and 3% endorsed all three. Current mental health did not differ between women with a history of miscarriage/termination/abortion and those with only live births (p = 0.82). Following miscarriage, 68% of women discussed options for the medical management of pregnancy loss with their provider, 32% discussed grief/loss, and 25% received mental health care recommendations. Engagement in mental health services was reported by 16% of women with a history of miscarriage, 38% after medical termination, and 19% following an abortion. Of women who became pregnant after their most recent miscarriage/termination/abortion and did not receive mental health care, 55% wished they had received services during the subsequent pregnancy. Conclusions: Women desire mental health care after miscarriages, medical terminations, or abortions, warranting improved access to mental health care for these individuals.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)149-157
Number of pages9
JournalGeneral Hospital Psychiatry
Volume84
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 Elsevier Inc.

Keywords

  • Abortion
  • Early pregnancy loss
  • Medical termination of pregnancy
  • Miscarriage
  • Perinatal care
  • Women's mental health

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

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