Mind-body interventions during pregnancy

Author: Beddoe AE, Lee KA
School of Nursing, San Jose State University, CA, USA
Conference/Journal: J Obstet Gynecol Neonatal Nurs.
Date published: 2008 Mar-Apr
Other: Volume ID: 37 , Issue ID: 2 , Pages: 165-75 , Word Count: 190

Objective: To examine published evidence on the effectiveness of mind-body interventions during pregnancy on perceived stress, mood, and perinatal outcomes. Data sources: Computerized searches of PubMed, Cinahl, PsycINFO, and the Cochrane Library. Study Selection: Twelve out of 64 published intervention studies between 1980 and February 2007 of healthy, adult pregnant women met criteria for review. Data extraction and synthesis: Studies were categorized by type of mind-body modality used. Progressive muscle relaxation was the most common intervention. Other studies used a multimodal psychoeducation approach or a yoga and meditation intervention. The research contained methodological problems, primarily absence of a randomized control group or failure to adequately control confounding variables. Nonetheless, there was modest evidence for the efficacy of mind-body modalities during pregnancy. Treatment group outcomes included higher birthweight, shorter length of labor, fewer instrument-assisted births, and reduced perceived stress and anxiety. Conclusions: There is evidence that pregnant women have health benefits from mind-body therapies used in conjunction with conventional prenatal care. Further research is necessary to build on these studies in order to predict characteristics of subgroups that might benefit from mind-body practices and examine cost effectiveness of these interventions on perinatal outcomes.
PMID: 18336440