Refereed journal article or data article (A1)

Depressive symptoms and sleep disturbances in late pregnancy: Associations with experience of induction of labor with a catheter

List of AuthorsHaavisto Henna, Rinne Kirsi, Kolari Terhi, Anttila Ella, Ojala Elina, Polo-Kantola Päivi


Publication year2023

JournalEuropean Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology and Reproductive Biology

Journal name in sourceEuropean journal of obstetrics, gynecology, and reproductive biology

Journal acronymEur J Obstet Gynecol Reprod Biol

Volume number283

Start page25

End page31





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Depressive symptoms and sleep disturbances have been found to be associated with negative labor experiences, particularly an increased level of pain. However, the associations between maternal depressive symptoms and sleep disturbances and the experience of induction of labor (IOL) remain unknown. In this study, we evaluated these associations with balloon catheter IOL.

Study design

A prospective study was conducted on 106 women with planned IOL. Depressive symptoms were evaluated with The Edinburg Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) and sleep disturbances with the Basic Nordic Sleep Questionnaire (BNSQ) at the beginning of IOL. The IOL experience was investigated both during the IOL and postpartum with the same nine visual analogue scale (VAS) questions.


Regarding sleep disturbances, during the IOL, women with worse general sleep quality were less satisfied (P = 0.019), less relaxed (P = 0.008), experienced more pain in general (P = 0.002) and reported higher contraction frequency (P = 0.003). Furthermore, women who experienced difficulties falling asleep were less relaxed (P = 0.009), reported more general pain (P < 0.001) and contraction pain (P = 0.005), while those with more daytime sleepiness reported less contraction pain (P = 0.033). In postpartum, women with worse general sleep quality reported more general pain (P = 0.003), while women with longer sleep duration and those with higher sleep loss reported more anxiety (P = 0.009 and P = 0.024, respectively). Additionally, women who woke up too early in the morning were less satisfied (P = 0.042), less relaxed (P = 0.004) and reported more general pain (P = 0.018). However, those who experienced more frequent nocturnal awakenings reported being more relaxed (P = 0.014) and having less general pain (P = 0.033). Higher depressive symptoms were associated with a higher frequency of contractions during IOL (P = 0.030), but with less general pain in postpartum (P = 0.027).


Women with sleep disturbances during pregnancy were more likely to report more negative experiences during the IOL. Specifically, they reported more pain, feeling less relaxed and they were less satisfied with IOL. Conversely, the association between depressive symptoms and the experience of IOL seemed weaker. Thus, the quality of sleep of pregnant women is important for a better experience of IOL.

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Last updated on 2023-27-03 at 12:59