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Revista chilena de pediatría

Print version ISSN 0370-4106


PALMA I, Elisa et al. Stress in parents of hospitalized newborns in a neonatal intensive care unit. Rev. chil. pediatr. [online]. 2017, vol.88, n.3, pp.332-339. ISSN 0370-4106.

The birth of a child that requires hospitalization in a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) can be very stressful for parents. Objective: To determine the stress level of parents of newborns (NB) hospitalized in a level III NICU in Santiago, and its association with clinical and sociodemographic variables. Patients and Method: Descriptive cross-sectional study. 373 admissions were evaluated. The sampling was non-probabilistic and included parents of RN admitted to the UPCN between 7 and 21 days of hospitalization. Only parents which have visited the RN at least three times were included. Instruments: i) Questionnaire to obtain data which could not be obtained from the medical record; ii) Parental Stress Scale: Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (PSS:NICU) which measures the perception of parents about stressors from the physical and psychological environment of the UPCN. Results: 100 parents of 59 hospitalized NB participated in the study. The average parental stress was 2.87±0.69. The subscale scores got higher was “Relationship with the baby and parental role”. Complications in pregnancy, prenatal diagnosis or prenatal hospitalization, did not affect the stress level or the presence of prematurity, respiratory diseases, congenital malformations, genopathies or requirement of mechanical ventilation. Conclusions: Stress levels presented in parents are unrelated to gender and to the studied clinical variables.

Keywords : Psychological stress; parents; neonatal intensive care units; premature infants.

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