Introduction: Low birth weight due to preterm delivery or intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR) is the strongest factor contributing to prenatal, neonatal, and postnatal mortality. Maternal–fetal attachment plays a significant role in maternal and fetal health. Health practices performed by the mother during pregnancy constitute one of the factors that may affect neonatal outcomes. The present study was conducted to identify the relationship between maternal–fetal attachment and health practices during pregnancy with neonatal outcomes. 

Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted on 315 pregnant women with a gestational age of 33-41 weeks who presented to hospitals in Sirjan (Iran) between December 2014 and February 2015. The data collection tools used included the Health Practices in Pregnancy Questionnaire and the Maternal Fetal Attachment Scale. Data were analyzed using IBM-SPSS version 20, focusing on the Pearson product–moment correlation and the logistic regression model. Statistical significance was set to p<0.05.

Results: The mean score of maternal–fetal attachment was 60.34, and the mean score of health practices was 123.57. The mean birth weight of the neonates was 3052.38 g. Health practices (p<0.05, r=0.11) and maternal-fetal attachment (p<0.01, r=0.23) were positively and significantly correlated with neonatal outcomes. A significant positive relationship was also observed between maternal–fetal attachment and neonatal outcomes. No significant relationships were observed between health practices during pregnancy and neonatal outcomes.

Conclusion: Maternal-fetal attachment and health practices during pregnancy are positively and significantly correlated with neonatal outcomes.


Keywords: Maternal-fetal attachment, Health practices, Pregnancy, Neonatal outcomes
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