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Pregnant Inmates Risk Factors and Pregnancy Outcomes

      Objective

      To document the risk factors and outcomes of pregnant women incarcerated in a maximum‐security prison.

      Design

      Descriptive correlational study.

      Setting

      Women's correctional facility.

      Participants

      Eighty‐nine pregnant women incarcerated during the third trimester of pregnancy.

      Main Outcome Measures

      Medical, obstetric, life‐style, and psychologic risk factors during pregnancy; birth weight; weeks of gestation at delivery; and presence of congenital anomalies in the newborn.

      Results

      Numerous risk factors during pregnancy, including chemical dependency, poor nutritional status, poor obstetric histories, high levels of anxiety and depression, and inadequate prenatal care.

      Conclusions

      There is a need for intensive prenatal education for incarcerated women and for chemical dependency treatment programs designed specifically for incarcerated pregnant women. Interventions that address psychologic distress also are needed.
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