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Post-traumatic stress, anxiety and depression following miscarriage or ectopic pregnancy: a prospective cohort study
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    PTSD risk factors in obstetrics & gynaecology

    Farren et al (1) state that they, ”were surprised by the prevalence of PTSD symptoms in our study”, and that, ”Future research should be aimed at assessing the risk factors for PTSD”.
    My research of 1993, into Post Traumatic Stress Disorder in women who have undergone Obstetric and/or Gynaecological Procedures (2), which was widely reported in the press, obstetric and midwifery literature, including the N.I.C.E Guidelines, identified several risk factors for the development of PTSD in the women affected.
    The key areas in the procedures seem to be those concerning the level of control which the woman has, the attitude of the doctor, the degree to which the patient’s views are heeded, and whether or not consent was perceived to have been given for the procedure. The gender of the examiner did not seem to be relevant.
    The women were asked in the questionnaire to describe their experiences, some of which were quite explicit and reminiscent of assault: “dehumanising and painful”; “degrading and distressing….no account was taken of my feelings”; “my opinions were dismissed as irrelevant although it was my body which was being invaded”; “I came away hurting and feeling violated”; “very brutal internal was excruciating”; “you begin to feel like a thing”; “I cried and shouted but was held down and told to stop making a noise”; “humiliation…as if it happened yesterday”; “I felt assaulted and then abandoned”; “I felt abused…like a piece of meat on a slab”; “the mo...

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    Conflict of Interest:
    None declared.