The authors report no conflict of interest or relevant financial relationships.
Pregnancy with Chronic Illness
Article first published online: 15 JAN 2014
© 2014 AWHONN, the Association of Women's Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses
Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic, & Neonatal Nursing
Volume 43, Issue 1, pages 25–37, January/February 2014
How to Cite
Tyer-Viola, L. A. and Lopez, R. P. (2014), Pregnancy with Chronic Illness. Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic, & Neonatal Nursing, 43: 25–37. doi: 10.1111/1552-6909.12275
- Issue published online: 15 JAN 2014
- Article first published online: 15 JAN 2014
- chronic illness;
To describe the experience of pregnancy with a chronic illness.
Tertiary Medical Center, Northeast United States.
A purposive sample of eight pregnant women with various chronic conditions.
The participants described their chronic illnesses as deviations from normality and their pregnancies brought them closer to normality. They described pregnancy as a balancing act between the fantasy of being normal and the reality of having a chronic disease. At the same time, women acknowledged the blessings and burdens of physical changes and intense vigilance. Participants also described emotional demands related to the need to be vigilant, additional physiological alternations, and information overload.
Pregnancy may alter chronic illness, increase stress, and create new health care needs for women. In turn, increased stress associated with chronic illness may alter perinatal outcomes. Pregnant women with chronic illness may benefit from interventions aimed at helping them balance the blessings and burdens associated with the symptoms of pregnancy.