Warning message

This content is filtered. APPPAH membership is required for full access to journal articles.
-A +A
Publication Date: 
March, 2004
Page Count: 
Starting Page: 

Pregnant women have been prescribed bed rest for a variety of reasons: preterm labor, incompetent cervix, high-blood pressure, multiple gestation, placenta previa, and many other patient-specific complications. However, while the prescription of bed rest has become routine, the effectiveness of this potentially harmful treatment is still controversial. Pregnant women that are confined to bed rest are at an increased risk for physical, emotional and economic hardships. By understanding these effects, utilizing appropriate interventions and educating this at-risk population on coping strategies, we as health care providers, can improve the quality of care we give our patients during this life-changing event.

KEY WORDS: Antepartum, bed rest, high-risk pregnancy.


Baun, M. M., Bergstrom, N., Langston, N. F., & Thoma, L. (1983). Physiological effects of human/companion animal bonding. Nursing Research, 33(3), 126-130.

Goldenberg, R. L., Oliver, S. P., Bronstein, J., Cutter, G. R., Andrews, W. W., & Mennemeyer, S.T. (1994). Bed rest in pregnancy. Obstetrics and Gynecology, 84(1), 131-135.

Gupton, A., Heaman, M., & Ashcroft, T. (1997). Bed rest for the perspective of the highrisk pregnant woman. Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic, and Neonatal Nursing, 26(4), 423-430.

LeBlanc, S., Gogia, P., Schneider, V., Krebs, J., Schonefeld, E., & Evans, H., (1998). Calf muscle area and strength changes after five weeks of horizontal bed rest. American Journal of Sports Medicine, 16, 624-629.

Maloni, J. A., Brezinski-Tomasi, J. E., & Johnson, L. (2001). Antepartum bed rest: Effect upon the family. Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic, and Neonatal Nursing, 30(2), 165-172.

Maloni, J. A., Chance, B., Zhang, C., Cohen, A. W., Betts, D., & Gange, S. J. (1993). Physical and psychosocial side effects of antepartum hospital bed rest. Nursing Research, 42(4), 197-203.

Maloni, J. A. & Kutil, R. M. (2000). Antepartum support group for women hospitalized on bedrest. American Journal of Maternal Child Nursing, 25(4), 204-210.

Maloni, J. A. & Ponder, B. (1997). Father's experience of their partners' antepartum bed rest. Image: Journal of Nursing Scholarship, 29(2), 183-187.

May, K. A. (1994). Impact of maternal activity restriction for preterm labor in the expectant father. Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic, and Neonatal Nursing, 23, 246-251.

Mercer, R., & Ferketich, S. (1988). Stress and social support as predictors of anxiety and depression during pregnancy. Advanced Nursing Science, 10, 26-39.

Nightingale, F. (1969). Notes on nursing: What it is, and what it is not. New York: Dover Publications.

Sandler, H., & Vernikos, J. (1986). Inactivity; Physiological effects. Orlando; Academic Press.

Schroeder, C. A. (1998). Bed rest in complicated pregnancy: A critical analysis. The American Journal of Maternal Child Nursing, 23(1), 45-49.

Titler, M., Cohen, M., & Craft, M. (1991). Impact of adult critical care hospitalization: Perceptions of patients, spouses, children, and nurses. Heart and Lung, 20(2), 174-182.

Holly Ruhlig, M.S., A.R.N.P.

Holly Ruhlig, M.S., A.R.N.P. is a Labor and Delivery nurse at University Community Hospital in Tampa, Florida and recently graduated from the Family Nurse Practitioner Program at University of South Florida. Correspondence about this article may be sent to hollyruhlig@yahoo.com