Comparison of Midwifery, Family Medicine, and Obstetric Patients' Understanding of Weight Gain During Pregnancy: A Minority of Women Report Correct Counselling

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Objective: We hypothesized that differences in models of carebetween health care providers would result in variations inpatients' reports of counselling. Our objective was to comparewhat women reported being advised about weight gain duringpregnancy and the risks of inappropriate weight gain according totheir type of health care provider. Methods: A cross-sectional survey was conducted using a selfadministeredquestionnaire at obstetric, midwifery, and familymedicine clinics in Hamilton, Ontario. Women were eligible toparticipate if they had had at least one prenatal visit, could readEnglish, and had a live, singleton pregnancy. Results: Three hundred and eight women completed the survey,a 93% response rate. Care for 90% of the group was dividedapproximately evenly between midwives, family physicians, andobstetricians. A minority of women looked after by any of the typesof care providers reported being counselled correctly about howmuch weight to gain during pregnancy (16.3%, 10.3%, 9.2%, and 5.7% of patients of midwives, family physicians, obstetricians, orother types of care providers, respectively, P = 0.349). A minorityof women with any category of care provider was planning to gainan amount of weight that fell within the guidelines or reportedbeing told that there were risks to themselves or their babies withinappropriate gain. Conclusion: In this study comparing reported counselling betweenpatients of obstetricians, midwives, family physicians, and otherhealth care providers, low rates of counselling about gestationalweight gain were universally reported. There is a common needfor more effective counselling.




McDonald, S. D., Pullenayegum, E., Bracken, K., Chen, A. M., McDonald, H., Malott, A., … Sword, W. (2012). Comparison of Midwifery, Family Medicine, and Obstetric Patients’ Understanding of Weight Gain During Pregnancy: A Minority of Women Report Correct Counselling. Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology Canada, 34(2), 129–135.

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