Anxiety levels of pregnant women during ultrasound examination: coping styles, amount of feedback and learned resourcefulness



Anxiety levels were measured before and after ultrasound examination in 183 women who underwent the procedure as part of their routine prenatal care. Women were classified according to their preferred mode of information gathering, their amount of available cognitive resources and predetermined feedback conditions. The results indicated significant reductions in state or situational anxiety levels for all subjects while trait anxiety was unaffected. In addition, the results suggested a correspondence between learned resourcefulness and informational coping styles. Women who had higher levels of cognitive resources and actively sought out information showed significantly greater decreases in state anxiety levels. This finding was also true for women who had lower levels of cognitive resources and tended to block out information. The impact of the scan was more profoundly affected by personality repertoires and informational coping styles than by either of the feedback conditions. Copyright © 1995 International Society of Ultrasound in Obstetrics and Gynecology