Lege Artis Medicinae

[What turns labour pain into suffering? The individual ways of coping]

RADOS Melinda, MÉSZÁROS Judit

DECEMBER 15, 2017

Lege Artis Medicinae - 2017;27(10-12)

[INTRODUCTION - Pain is not only a sensory experience, but includes emotional, motivational and cognitive dimensions, thus women’s perceptions of labour pain are largely influenced by individual attitudes. The distinction between pain and suffering sheds light on valuable information. Our aim was to study the relationship between women’s labour pain and their sense of suffering, and the effects of epidural analgesia on their judgements of pain, stress and satisfaction. SAMPLE AND METHOD - 342 women participated in our study. Their pain was assessed with the Numerical Rating Scale, sense of suffering with the shortened Perceived Stress Scale, which were followed by questions of epidural analgesia administration, its perceived effects and satisfaction. RESULTS - Women’s feelings of pain and sense of suffering show a strong positive correlation (R=0,283, p<0,001); but with the increase of these dimensions their satisfaction decreased (R=-0,162 and R= -0,444 respectively, p<0,001). The administration of epidural analgesia did not have a significant effect on their judgements of pain, stress and satisfaction. Perceived stress had the strongest determining influence on satisfaction (b=-0,534, p<0,001). CONCLUSIONS - According to our results on pain relief, we suggest the wider use of various non-pharmacological methods. Alleviation of maternal fear and suffering through non-judgemental, patient and supportive attitude of caregivers is of paramount importance.]

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