Study looks more closely at maternal feelings on childbirth
Participants are needed for a new University of Tasmania study, which aims to uncover new mums’ views on childbirth and their choice to have a caesarean section birth.
College of Health and Medicine PhD student Lynne Staff, who is carrying out the study with fellow researchers Dr Shandell Elmer and Dr Meredith Nash, said the research team was looking for women who had a healthy, normal first pregnancy and requested a caesarean, to gain a greater understanding of what leads women to their decision.
“We want to look at the meanings women who make this decision attach to labour, vaginal birth and to caesarean section,” Ms Staff said.
“We also want to find out when in their lives they make the decision to have a caesarean, because there is little known about this.
“While maternal request caesarean has been researched before, there has been little research that examines the meanings that women who choose a caesarean attach to the birth process.”
The study requires the participation of women who have had a normal and healthy first pregnancy (in the past two years) and who asked their doctor for a caesarean section for the birth of their baby.
The study requires around three hours of a participant’s time, that includes two interviews and the production of a visual image such as a collage or drawing, which aims to provide an additional dimension for participants to express their thoughts and feelings around childbirth.
An experienced midwife and researcher, Ms Staff said her drive for carrying out the study was both to uncover new information and most importantly to enable women the opportunity to voice their individual feelings and experiences.
“I want to do this as a researcher and a health professional because it is important that women are able to tell their story,” she said.
“Women need to have a voice yet too often they are silenced and don’t feel like they can speak especially when it comes to something as emotive and as personal as childbirth decisions.”