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Factors associated with a positive childbirth experience in Brazilian women: A cross-sectional study

      Abstract

      Background

      Having a positive childbirth experience is an increasingly valued outcome. Few studies evaluated the women’s satisfaction with childbirth through face-to-face interviews out of the health service environment. The objective of this study was to identify factors associated with a higher level of satisfaction with the childbirth experience among Brazilian women.

      Methods

      This cross-sectional study involved 287 women giving birth in two hospitals in southern Brazil. Women who gave birth to healthy newborns at term were randomly selected. Face-to-face interviews were conducted 31–37 days after delivery, at the mothers’ homes, using a structured questionnaire. Satisfaction with the childbirth experience was measured using a Likert-type scale ranging from very satisfied to very dissatisfied. Prevalence ratios (PR) were estimated using Poisson regression with robust variance.

      Results

      Following hierarchical multivariate analysis, the following factors remained associated with a higher level of satisfaction with the childbirth experience: being satisfied with antenatal care (PR = 1.30; 95% confidence interval [95%CI] = 1.06−1.59), understanding the information provided by health professionals during labor and delivery (PR = 1.40; 95%CI = 1.01−1.95), not having reported disrespect and abuse (PR = 1.53; 95%CI = 1.01−2.31), and having had the baby put to the breast within the first hour of life (PR = 1.63; 95%CI = 1.26−2.11). No association was observed with type of delivery or hospital status (public or private).

      Conclusions

      A higher level of satisfaction with the childbirth experience is related to satisfactory antenatal care, a non-abusive, respectful, and informative environment during childbirth, and to the opportunity to breastfeed the baby within the first hour of life. In clinical practice, greater attention to these basic principles of care during pregnancy and delivery could provide more positive experiences during birth.

      Abbreviations:

      PR (Prevalence Ratio), CI (Confidence Interval), WHO (World Health Organization), SPSS (Statistical Package for the Social Sciences)

      Keywords

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