Change search
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Two sides of the same coin - an interview study of Swedish obstetricians' experiences using ultrasound in pregnancy management
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Clinical Sciences, Obstetrics and Gynaecology.
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Nursing.
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Clinical Sciences, Obstetrics and Gynaecology. Judith Lumley Centre, La Trobe University, Melbourne, Vic 3000, Australia.
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Clinical Sciences, Obstetrics and Gynaecology.
Show others and affiliations
2015 (English)In: BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth, ISSN 1471-2393, E-ISSN 1471-2393, Vol. 15, 304Article in journal (Refereed) PublishedText
Abstract [en]

Background: The extended use of ultrasound that is seen in maternity care in most Western countries has not only affected obstetric care but also impacted on the conception of the fetus in relation to the pregnant woman. This situation has also raised concerns regarding the pregnant woman’s reproductive freedom. The purpose of this study was to explore Swedish obstetricians’ experiences and views on the role of obstetric ultrasound particularly in relation to clinical management of complicated pregnancy, and in relation to situations where the interests of maternal and fetal health conflict.

Methods: A qualitative study design was applied, and data were collected in 2013 through interviews with 11 obstetricians recruited from five different obstetric clinics in Sweden. Data were analysed using qualitative content analysis.

Results: The theme that emerged in the analysis ‘Two sides of the same coin’ depicts the view of obstetric ultrasound as a very important tool in obstetric care while it also was experienced as having given rise to new and challenging issues in the management of pregnancy. This theme was built on three categories: I. Ultrasound is essential and also demanding; II. A woman’s health interest is prioritised in theory, but not always in practice; and III. Ultrasound is rewarding but may also cause unwarranted anxiety.

Conclusions: The widespread use of ultrasound in obstetric care has entailed new challenges for clinicians due to enhanced possibilities to diagnose and treat fetal conditions, which in turn might conflict with the health interests of the pregnant woman. There is a need for further ethical discussions regarding the obstetrician’s position in management of situations where maternal and fetal health interests conflict. The continuing advances in the potential of ultrasound to impact on pregnancy management will also increase the need for adequate and appropriate information and counselling. Together with other health care professionals, obstetricians therefore need to develop improved ways of enabling pregnant women and their partners to make informed decisions regarding pregnancy management.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 15, 304
Keyword [en]
Autonomy, Human rights, Obstetric ultrasound, Obstetrician, Pregnancy, Pregnant women, Prenatal agnostics, Qualitative study, Sweden
National Category
Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Medicine
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-113435DOI: 10.1186/s12884-015-0743-5ISI: 000365264900002PubMedID: 26589489OAI: diva2:885395
Available from: 2015-12-18 Created: 2015-12-18 Last updated: 2015-12-18Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

fulltext(526 kB)39 downloads
File information
File name FULLTEXT01.pdfFile size 526 kBChecksum SHA-512
Type fulltextMimetype application/pdf

Other links

Publisher's full textPubMed

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Åhman, AnnikaPersson, MargaretaEdvardsson, KristinaLalos, AnnMogren, Ingrid
By organisation
Obstetrics and GynaecologyDepartment of Nursing
In the same journal
BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth
Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Medicine

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar
Total: 39 downloads
The number of downloads is the sum of all downloads of full texts. It may include eg previous versions that are now no longer available

Altmetric score

Total: 36 hits
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link