A survey of the knowledge and attitudes of pregnant Thai women towards Down syndrome screening

Authors


Dr Chitkasaem Suwanrath, Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Faculty of Medicine, Prince of Songkla University, Hat Yai, Songkhla 90110, Thailand. Email: schitkas@yahoo.co.uk

Abstract

Aim:  To determine the knowledge and attitudes of pregnant Thai women towards Down syndrome screening.

Methods:  A total of 714 pregnant women were recruited attending antenatal clinics in Songklanagarind Hospital from February through June 2007. Their knowledge and attitudes concerning Down syndrome screening were evaluated through self-administered questionnaires. The data were analyzed using SPSS version 12.0.

Results:  The mean age of the respondents was 29.9 ± 6.4 years. Regarding their knowledge of Down syndrome and its screening test, the mean scores were 43.6% and 20.6%, respectively. Most pregnant women (77.6%) had a positive attitude to Down syndrome screening. In addition, 92.2% of cases would accept a Down syndrome screening test. Multivariate logistic regression analysis showed that levels of education and types of health insurance were factors associated with knowledge of Down syndrome screening. Maternal age was the only factor affecting attitudes.

Conclusion:  Most pregnant women had inadequate knowledge of Down syndrome and the screening test. However, they did have a positive attitude and were willing to accept the test. Providing knowledge on Down syndrome and the screening test for pregnant women should be implemented in our antenatal care services and community.

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