Aim: Recurrent miscarriage is considered a major life event. The main purposes of this study were to compare the differences in stress, anxiety, social support, sleep quality and depressive symptoms in couples experiencing recurrent miscarriage compared to peers who experience full-term normal childbirth in southern Taiwan. Methods: Convenience sampling and snowball sampling were used respectively to recruit 78 couples with and 80 couples without recurrent miscarriage from October 2014 to July 2015. Five structured questionnaires including Perceived Stress Scale, State- Anxiety Inventory, Interpersonal Support Evaluation List, Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index and Edinburgh Depression Scale were administered. Results: Women who experienced recurrent miscarriage perceived significantly higher levels of stress, anxiety and depressive symptoms than their husbands. Women in the recurrent miscarriage group reported significantly greater depressive symptoms than women of the other group. A stepwise multiple regression analysis indicated key predictors of depressive symptoms among women of childbearing age, accounting for 62.9% of the variance, were anxiety, stress, social support and history of recurrent miscarriage. Conclusion: Women with recurrent miscarriage suffer mild to moderate depressive symptoms and a greater incidence of depression than their peers who experienced normal childbirth. Health professionals can use the knowledge gained from these findings to evaluate women with recurrent miscarriage for stress, anxiety and depressive symptoms and develop supportive interventions.
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