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J Obstet Gynecol Neonatal Nurs. 1997 Jan-Feb;26(1):43-51.

Parents' experience surrounding the death of a newborn whose birth is at the margin of viability.

Author information

1
Department of Maternal-Child Nursing, University of Illinois, Chicago 60612-7350, USA.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To describe the experience of parents surrounding the death of a newborn weighing less than 500 g at birth.

DESIGN:

Descriptive, using an eidetic phenomenologic approach.

SETTING:

Interviews were conducted in the parents' homes or by telephone between 4 and 15 weeks after the loss.

PARTICIPANTS:

Eight parents (five mothers and three of their husbands) who had experienced the death of a newborn weighing less than 500 g at birth.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:

The lived parental experience of the death of a newborn consists of a number of parental processes, responses, and activities that occur over time.

RESULTS:

Five themes were generated from the data: (a) realization that the loss is occurring; (b) initial response to the loss; (c) decision making at the time of the loss; (d) components of supportive relationships with others; and (e) the adjustment at home.

CONCLUSIONS:

The findings demonstrate the unique experience of having a newborn who is born at the margin of viability and support the need for individualized, caring-based interventions for parents.

PMID:
9017546
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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