University of Worcester Worcester Research and Publications

Early psychological interventions for prevention and treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and post-traumatic stress symptoms in post-partum women: A systematic review and meta-analysis

Taylor Miller, P.G., Sinclair, M., Gillen, P., McCullough, J.E.M., Miller, P.W., Farrell, Derek ORCID:, Slater, P.F., Shapiro, E. and Klaus6, P. (2021) Early psychological interventions for prevention and treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and post-traumatic stress symptoms in post-partum women: A systematic review and meta-analysis. PLoS One, 16 (11). e0258170. ISSN 1932-6203

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Pre-term or full-term childbirth can be experienced as physically or psychologically traumatic. Cumulative and trans-generational effects of traumatic stress on both psychological and physical health indicate the ethical requirement to investigate appropriate preventative treatment for stress symptoms in women following a routine traumatic experience such as childbirth.

The objective of this review was to investigate the effectiveness of early psychological interventions in reducing or preventing post-traumatic stress symptoms and post-traumatic stress disorder in post-partum women within twelve weeks of a traumatic birth.

Randomised controlled trials and pilot studies of psychological interventions preventing or reducing post-traumatic stress symptoms or PTSD, that included women who had experienced a traumatic birth, were identified in a search of Cochrane Central Register of Randomised Controlled Trials, MEDLINE, Embase, Psychinfo, PILOTS, CINAHL and Proquest Dissertations databases. One author performed database searches, verified results with a subject librarian, extracted study details and data. Five authors appraised extracted data and agreed upon risk of bias. Analysis was completed with Rev Man 5 software and quality of findings were rated according to Grading of Recommendation, Assessment, Development, and Evaluation.

Eleven studies were identified that evaluated the effectiveness of a range of early psychological interventions. There was firm evidence to suggest that midwifery or clinician led early psychological interventions administered within 72 hours following traumatic childbirth are more effective than usual care in reducing traumatic stress symptoms in women at 4–6 weeks. Further studies of high methodological quality that include longer follow up of 6–12 months are required in order to substantiate the evidence of the effectiveness of specific face to face and online early psychological intervention modalities in preventing the effects of stress symptoms and PTSD in women following a traumatic birth before introduction to routine care and practice.

Item Type: Article
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Copyright: © 2021 Taylor Miller et al. This is an
open access article distributed under the terms of
the Creative Commons Attribution License, which
permits unrestricted use, distribution, and
reproduction in any medium, provided the original
author and source are credited.

Divisions: College of Business, Psychology and Sport > School of Psychology
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Depositing User: Derek Farrell
Date Deposited: 13 Dec 2021 15:25
Last Modified: 17 Jan 2022 17:49

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