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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.


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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

JOURNAL OF PRENATAL AND PERINATAL PSYCHOLOGY AND HEALTH publishes research and clinical articles from the cutting edge of the science of prenatal and perinatal psychology and health. The journal, published quarterly since 1986, is dedicated to the in-depth exploration human reproduction and pregnancy and the mental and emotional development of the unborn and newborn child.

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