Article

Complicated grief after perinatal loss

Department of Psychosomatic Medicine, University of Leipzig, Germany.
Dialogues in clinical neuroscience 06/2012; 14(2):187-94.
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The loss of an infant through stillbirth, miscarriage, or neonatal death is recognized as a traumatic life event. Predictors of development of complicated grief after prenatal loss include lack of social support, pre-existing relationship difficulties, or absence of surviving children, as well as ambivalent attitudes or heightened perception of the reality of the pregnancy. Risk of complicated grief was found to be especially high after termination of a pregnancy due to fetal abnormality. Studies have revealed that men and women show different patterns of grief, potentially exacerbating decline in a relationship. Although it is clear that prenatal loss has a large psychological impact, it is concluded that there is a substantial lack of randomized controlled studies in this field of research.

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