Hosseini SM, Biglan MW, Larkby C, et al. Trait anxiety in pregnant women predicts offspring birth outcomes

Departments of Physical Medicine, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, USA.
Paediatric and Perinatal Epidemiology (Impact Factor: 3.13). 11/2009; 23(6):557-66. DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-3016.2009.01065.x
Source: PubMed


The goal of our study was to characterise the relationships between trait anxiety symptoms of women during their pregnancies and birth outcomes of their offspring using a longitudinal cohort from the Maternal Health Practices and Child Development Project. We used the State-Trait Personality Index anxiety measure that is based on Spielberger's State-Trait Anxiety Inventory to measure self-reported trait anxiety at two gestational assessments (fourth and seventh months, representing the first and second trimesters, respectively) and at a third assessment shortly after delivery (representing the third trimester). Demographic, social, psychological, substance use and medical factors were assessed prenatally, and outcomes of the 763 live, singleton births were determined at delivery. In regression models, trait anxiety at the second and third trimesters predicted lower birthweight and shorter birth length, controlling for confounders. Anxiety reported at the third trimester predicted shortened gestational age, controlling for confounders. At the first and second trimesters, the relationship of birthweight and birth length to maternal trait anxiety was only significant for severe anxiety. Women whose anxiety reached severe levels for at least two trimesters were significantly more likely to deliver offspring of lower birthweight and shorter birth length than those women who reported severe anxiety at none or only one of the trimesters. Additionally, offspring of women who experienced severe anxiety during all three trimesters had shorter mean gestational age than offspring of women who did not report severe anxiety at any trimester. Women who report chronic, severe trait anxiety are at the highest risk of having shorter gestations and delivering smaller babies.

Download full-text


Available from: Michael B Gorin,
  • Source
    • "Perceived stress is often associated with symptoms such as anxiety and fatigue [2, 3] and these related symptoms may increase the deleterious effect of stress on health and birth outcomes. For example, state and trait anxiety during pregnancy has been associated with stress and has been found to significantly predict gestational age and preterm birth [4, 5]. Likewise, maternal fatigue has been found to be positively associated with stress [6] and anxiety [7, 8] and is recognized as a symptom of these mental states [9]. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the efficacy of a guided imagery (GI) intervention for stress reduction in pregnant African American women beginning early in the second trimester. This prospective longitudinal study of 72 women used a randomized controlled experimental design with two groups conducted over 12 weeks. The intervention was a CD with 4 professionally recorded tracts designed and sequenced to influence study variables. Participants in both GI and usual care (UC) completed measures and donated 5 cc of blood at baseline, 8 weeks and 12 weeks. Participants also completed a daily stress scale. A mixed-effects linear model tested for differences between groups for self-reported measures of stress, anxiety, and fatigue as well as corticotrophin releasing hormone (CRH), a biologic marker of stress. Significant differences in perceived stress daily scores and at week 8 but not week 12 were found in the GI group compared to UC group. The GI group reported significantly less fatigue and anxiety than the UC group at week 8 but not week 12. There were no significant differences in CRH levels between groups. Results suggest that GI intervention may be effective in reducing perceived stress, anxiety, and fatigue measures among pregnant African American women.
    Evidence-based Complementary and Alternative Medicine 02/2014; 2014(2):840923. DOI:10.1155/2014/840923 · 1.88 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Many women suffer from new or worsening anxiety during pregnancy. In this pilot study, we investigated the effect of timing and severity of prenatal state anxiety symptoms on reduced birth weight. We hypothesized that: (1) Women with state anxiety symptoms during mid-gestation would deliver newborns with lower birth weight in comparison to participants with symptoms in early gestation and (2) compared to women with lower anxiety symptoms (< 50th percentile), women with medium-to-high state anxiety symptoms (> 50th percentile) would have lower birth weight offspring. The sample consisted of the first 30 pregnant women who agreed to participate in this pilot study. We assessed anxiety symptoms, using the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory during early and mid-gestation. We obtained birth weight from clinical charts. A hierarchical multiple regression showed that, after controlling for covariates, state anxiety symptoms in mid-gestation were associated with lower infant birth weight [F(9, 7) = 20.30, p<.001]. However, birth weight did not differ as a function of the severity of maternal state anxiety [F(1, 23)=.14, p=.71 and F(1, 24)=1.76, p=.20., respectively]. Clearly, our pilot data need replication. Once statistical significance is established with larger samples, it will be informative to examine the clinical significance of those findings.
    Central European Journal of Medicine 12/2012; 7(6). DOI:10.2478/s11536-012-0078-9 · 0.15 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: This review focuses on anxiety in patients with somatic diseases, based on studies published from 2007 through January 2010. It covers neurological, cardiovascular, respiratory, and endocrine diseases as well as HIV/AIDS, trauma, skin conditions, and other somatic diseases. Anxiety may be an acute and adequate reaction to receiving a diagnosis of a disabling or life-threatening disease. It may also be precipitated by stroke, injury, or the distress of having to manage diabetes or AIDS. Several studies show that anxious patients inflate self-perceived health problems and are more sensitive to physical symptoms in a manner disproportionate to objective disease validators. Therefore, intervention should be reserved for those patients most likely to benefit from reduced anxiety, improved management of the somatic condition, and improved functioning.This issue is particularly important for the elderly, who represent a growing global challenge. Late-onset anxiety may be caused by loneliness and bereavement, and can be compounded by immobilization and somatic disease. Controlled treatment studies of anxiolytics as well as their potential benefits in the overall management of anxious patients with somatic disease are generally lacking. Research to determine the benefits and costs of such treatments in primary and tertiary care is currently underway.
Show more