The Auckland Stillbirth Study: The Experience Of Participants

T Stacey, Edwin Mitchell, J Thompson, A Ekeroma, J Zuccollo, L Mccowan

Research output: Contribution to journalMeeting Abstractpeer-review


Background: Each year in New Zealand one in 300 babies die in utero at or after 28 weeks gestation. Few studies reporting risk factors for stillbirth have interviewed recently bereaved mothers.Researchers and ethics committees have been concerned about the impact on participants of taking part in such research.Method: The Auckland Stillbirth Study is a 3-year case control study exploring maternal lifestyle and environmental risk factors for late stillbirth. Data are collected from clinical records and a face-to-face interview, which generally takes place within 2–4 weeks of the still-birth. Controls are recruited at an equivalent gestation to the case, while still pregnant. Feedback forms regarding the experience of par-ticipation in the research are given to participants at the end of the interview and the anonymised forms are posted back. Content analy-sis of this feedback was used to identify emergent themes in the data.Results: Seventy feedback forms have been returned to date, repre-senting 21% of participants. Amongst cases, four main themes emerged: ‘helping others’ (62%), ‘finding answers’ (24%), ‘talking and sharing’ (19%) and ‘doing something wrong’ (19%). The overwhelming response from controls was pleasure to participate in research that might be of help to others. Although a negative experience of taking part in this research can not be ruled out, no negative feedback has been received.Conclusion: Participation in stillbirth research can be a positive expe-rience for both cases and controls
Original languageEnglish
Article numberA182
Pages (from-to)A63
Number of pages1
JournalJournal of Paediatrics and Child Health
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2009
Externally publishedYes
Event13th Annual Congress of the Perinatal Society of Australia and New Zealand: Better Birthing, Better Babies - Darwin Conference Centre, Darwin, Australia
Duration: 19 Apr 200922 Apr 2009
Conference number: 13


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