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  • 1.
    Auer, Anna
    et al.
    Karolinska Institutet, Institutionen för folkhälsovetenskap.
    Dobmeier, TM
    Community Integrated Health Services, Interior Health, Canada.
    Haglund, BJ
    Karolinska Institutet, Institutionen för folkhälsovetenskap.
    Tillgren, Per
    Mälardalen University, School of Health, Care and Social Welfare.
    The relevance of WHO injury surveillance guidelines for evaluation: learning from the Aboriginal Community-Centered Injury Surveillance System (ACCISS)and two institution-based systems2011In: BMC Public Health, ISSN 1471-2458, E-ISSN 1471-2458, Vol. 11, no 744Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    BACKGROUND:

    Over the past three decades, the capacity to develop and implement injury surveillance systems (ISS) has grown worldwide and is reflected by the diversity of data gathering environments in which ISS operate. The capacity to evaluate ISS, however, is less advanced and existing evaluation guidelines are ambiguous. Furthermore, the applied relevance of these guidelines to evaluate ISS operating in various settings is unclear. The aim of this paper was to examine how the World Health Organization (WHO) injury surveillance guidelines have been applied to evaluate systems operating in three different contexts.

    METHODS:

    The attributes of a good surveillance system as well as instructions for conducting evaluations, outlined in the WHO injury surveillance guidelines, were used to develop an analytical framework. Using this framework, a comparative analysis of the application of the guidelines was conducted using; the Aboriginal Community-Centered Injury Surveillance System (ACCISS) from Canada, the Shantou-Emergency Department Injury Surveillance Project (S-EDISP) from China, and the Yorkhill-Canadian Hospitals Injury Reporting and Prevention Program (Y-CHIRPP) imported from Canada and implemented in Scotland.

    RESULTS:

    The WHO guidelines provide only a basic platform for evaluation. The guidelines over emphasize epidemiologic attributes and methods and under emphasize public health and injury prevention perspectives requiring adaptation for context-based relevance. Evaluation elements related to the dissemination and use of knowledge, acceptability, and the sustainability of ISS are notably inadequate. From a public health perspective, alternative reference points are required for re-conceptualizing evaluation paradigms. This paper offers an ISS evaluation template that considers how the WHO guidelines could be adapted and applied.

    CONCLUSIONS:

    Findings suggest that attributes of a good surveillance system, when used as evaluation metrics, cannot be weighted equally across ISS. In addition, the attribute of acceptability likely holds more relevance than previously recognized and should be viewed as a critical underpinning attribute of ISS. Context-oriented evaluations sensitive to distinct operational environments are more likely to address knowledge gaps related to; understanding links between the production of injury data and its use, and the effectiveness, impact, and sustainability of ISS. Current frameworks are predisposed to disassociating epidemiologic approaches from subjective factors and social processes.

  • 2.
    Choowong, Jiraporn
    et al.
    Mälardalen University, School of Health, Care and Social Welfare, Health and Welfare. Minist Publ Hlth, PIHWD, Boromarajonani Coll Nursing Trang, Trang 92000, Thailand..
    Tillgren, Per
    Mälardalen University, School of Health, Care and Social Welfare, Health and Welfare.
    Söderbäck, Maja
    Mälardalen University, School of Health, Care and Social Welfare, Health and Welfare.
    Thai district Leaders' perceptions of managing the direct observation treatment program in Trang Province, Thailand2016In: BMC Public Health, ISSN 1471-2458, E-ISSN 1471-2458, Vol. 16, article id 653Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Background: Thailand is 18th out of the 22 countries with the highest tuberculosis (TB) burden. It will be a challenge for Thailand to achieve the UN Millennium Development target for TB, as well as the new WHO targets for eliminating TB by 2035. More knowledge and a new approach are needed to tackle the complex challenges of managing the DOT program in Thailand. Contextual factors strongly influence the local implementation of evidence in practice. Using the PARIHS model, the aim has been to explore district leaders' perceptions of the management of the DOT program in Trang province, Thailand. Methods: A phenomenographic approach was used to explore the perceptions among district DOT program leaders in Trang province. We conducted semi-structured interviews with district leaders responsible for managing the DOT program in five districts. The analysis of the data transcriptions was done by grouping similarities and differences of perceptions, which were constructed in a hierarchical outcome space that shows a set of descriptive categories. Results: The first descriptive category revealed a common perception of the leaders' duty and wish to comply with the NTP guidelines when managing and implementing the DOT program in their districts. More varied perceptions among the leaders concerned how to achieve successful treatment. Other perceptions concerned practical dilemmas, which included fear of infection, mutual distrust, and inadequate knowledge about TB. Further, the leaders perceived a need for improved management practices in implementing the TB guidelines. Conclusion: Using the PARIHS framework to gain a retrospective perspective on the district-level policy implementation of the DOT program and studying the leadership's perceptions about applying the guidelines to practice, has brought new knowledge about management practices. Additional support and resources from the regional level are needed to manage the challenges.

  • 3.
    Couto, Maria Thereza
    et al.
    Karolinska institutet.
    Tillgren, Per
    Mälardalen University, School of Health, Care and Social Welfare.
    Söderbäck, Maja
    Mälardalen University, School of Health, Care and Social Welfare.
    Drivers' and conductors' views of causes and prevention of workplace violence in the road passenger transport sector in Maputo city, Mozambique2011In: BMC Public Health, ISSN 1471-2458, E-ISSN 1471-2458, Vol. 11, no 800Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Background

    Workplace violence (WPV) is an occupational health hazard in both low and high income countries. To design WPV prevention programs, prior knowledge and understanding of conditions in the targeted population are essential. This study explores and describes the views of drivers and conductors on the causes of WPV and ways of preventing it in the road passenger transport sector in Maputo City, Mozambique.

    Methods

    The design was qualitative. Participants were purposefully selected from among transport workers identified as victims of WPV in an earlier quantitative study, and with six or more years of experience in the transport sector. Data were collected in semi-structured interviews. Seven open questions covered individual views on causes of WPV and its prevention, based on the interviewees' experiences of violence while on duty. Thirty-two transport professionals were interviewed. The data were analyzed by means of qualitative content analysis.

    Results

    The triggers and causes of violence included fare evasion, disputes over revenue owing to owners, alcohol abuse, overcrowded vehicles, and unfair competition for passengers. Failures to meet passenger expectations, e.g. by-passing parts of a bus route or missing stops, were also important. There was disrespect on the part of transport workers, e.g. being rude to passengers and jumping of queues at taxi ranks, and there were also robberies. Proposals for prevention included: training for workers on conflict resolution, and for employers on passenger-transport administration; and, promoting learning among passengers and workers on how to behave when traveling collectively. Regarding control and supervision, there were expressed needs for the recording of mileage, and for the sanctioning of workers who transgress queuing rules at taxi ranks. The police or supervisors should prevent drunken passengers from getting into vehicles, and drivers should refuse to go to dangerous, secluded neighborhoods. Finally, there is a need for an institution to judge alleged cases of employees not handing over demanded revenues to their employer.

    Conclusions

    The causes of WPV lie in problems regarding money, behavior, environment, organization and crime. Suggestions for prevention include education, control to avoid critical situations, and a judicial system to assess malpractices. Further research in the road passenger transport sector in Maputo City, Mozambique and similar settings is warranted.

  • 4.
    Dean, Elizabeth
    et al.
    Univ British Columbia, Canada.
    Moffat, Marilyn
    NYU, USA.
    Skinner, Margot
    University of Otago, New Zealand.
    de Andrade, Armele Dornelas
    Universidade Federal de Pernambuco, Brazil.
    Myezwa, Hellen
    Witwatersrand University, South Africa.
    Söderlund, Anne
    Mälardalen University, School of Health, Care and Social Welfare, Health and Welfare.
    Toward core inter-professional health promotion competencies to address the non-communicable diseases and their risk factors through knowledge translation: Curriculum content assessment2014In: BMC Public Health, ISSN 1471-2458, E-ISSN 1471-2458, Vol. 14, p. 717-Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Background: To increase the global impact of health promotion related to non-communicable diseases, health professionals need evidence-based core competencies in health assessment and lifestyle behavior change. Assessment of health promotion curricula by health professional programs is a first step. Such program assessment is a means of 1. demonstrating collective commitment across health professionals to prevent non-communicable diseases; 2. addressing the knowledge translation gap between what is known about non-communicable diseases and their risk factors consistent with 'best' practice; and, 3. establishing core health-based competencies in the entry-level curricula of established health professions. Discussion: Consistent with the World Health Organization's definition of health (i.e., physical, emotional and social wellbeing) and the Ottawa Charter, health promotion competencies are those that support health rather than reduce signs and symptoms primarily. A process algorithm to guide the implementation of health promotion competencies by health professionals is described. The algorithm outlines steps from the initial assessment of a patient's/client's health and the indications for health behavior change, to the determination of whether that health professional assumes primary responsibility for implementing health behavior change interventions or refers the patient/client to others. An evidence-based template for assessment of the health promotion curriculum content of health professional education programs is outlined. It includes clinically-relevant behavior change theory; health assessment/examination tools; and health behavior change strategies/interventions that can be readily integrated into health professionals' practices. Summary: Assessment of the curricula in health professional education programs with respect to health promotion competencies is a compelling and potentially cost-effective initial means of preventing and reversing non-communicable diseases. Learning evidence-based health promotion competencies within an inter-professional context would help students maximize use of non-pharmacologic/non-surgical approaches and the contribution of each member of the health team. Such a unified approach would lead patients/clients to expect their health professionals to assess their health and lifestyle practices, and empower and support them in achieving lifelong health. Benefits of such curriculum assessment include a basis for reflection and discussion within and across health professional programs that could impact the epidemic of non-communicable diseases globally, through inter-professional education and evidence-based practice related to health promotion.

  • 5.
    Jansson, Elisabeth
    et al.
    Mälardalen University, School of Health, Care and Social Welfare.
    Tillgren, Per
    Mälardalen University, School of Health, Care and Social Welfare.
    Health promotion at local level: A case study of content, organization and development in four Swedish municipalities2010In: BMC Public Health, ISSN 1471-2458, E-ISSN 1471-2458, Vol. 10, no Article Number: 455Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Background: Several health determinants are related to local conditions and prerequisites at community level. For this reason, strengthening community action has been one of five strategies implemented in health promotion since the end of the 1980s. Such action includes setting priorities, making decisions, planning strategies, and implementing them to achieve better health. The aim of this paper is to obtain a deeper understanding of content, organization and processes in the development of local health promotion.

    Methods: A qualitative multiple case study of four Swedish municipalities. The cases were analyzed in accordance with the principles of cross-case study analysis, and a content analysis of documents and interviews was conducted in two steps. First, a manifest content analysis was performed to identify present and former actors and measures. Thereafter, a latent content analysis was performed to investigate structures and processes in local contexts.

    Results: The results of the inductive content analysis showed development of local health promotion in three phases: initiation, action, and achievement. Strengthening factors were local actors, health statistics and events. Hindering factors were lack of resources and vague objectives. External factors, e.g. national policies, were not perceived as prominent influencing factors. Media reports were regarded as having had an influence, but only to some extent. The content of local health promotion has developed from ad-hoc lifestyle and behaviour-related actions into structural, intersectoral actions related to determinants of health.

    Conclusions: The municipalities have organized and developed their health promotion targets, actions and priorities on the basis of local needs and prerequisites. The three phases in the identified health promotion processes were experienced and documented as being subject to greater influence from internal rather than external strengthening and hindering factors in their local contexts.

  • 6.
    Lännerström, Linda
    et al.
    Uppsala universitet, Sweden.
    Wallman, Thorne
    Uppsala universitet, Sweden.
    Holmström, Inger K
    Uppsala universitet, Sweden.
    Losing independence – the lived experience of being long-term sick-listed2013In: BMC Public Health, ISSN 1471-2458, E-ISSN 1471-2458, Vol. 13, no 1, p. 745-Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Background: Sickness absence is a multifaceted problem. Much is known about risk factors for being long-term sick-listed, but there is still little known about the various aftermaths and experiences of it. The aim of this qualitative study was to describe, analyze and understand long-term sickness-absent people's experiences of being sick-listed. Methods: The design was descriptive and had a phenomenological approach. Sixteen long-term sickness-absent individuals were purposively sampled from three municipalities in Sweden in 2011, and data were collected through semi-structured, individual interviews. The interview questions addressed how the participants experienced being sick-listed and how the sick-listing affected their lives. Transcribed interviews were analysed using Giorgi's phenomenological method. Results: The interviews revealed that the participants' experiences of being sick-listed was that they lost their independence in the process of stepping out of working society, attending the mandatory steps in the rehabilitation chain and having numerous encounters with professionals. The participants described that their life-worlds were radically changed when they became sick-listed. Their experiences of their changing life-worlds were mostly highly negative, but there were also a few positive experiences. The most conspicuous findings were the fact that stopping working brought with it so many changes, the participants' feelings of powerlessness in the process, and their experiences of offensive treatment by and/or encounters with professionals. Conclusions: Sick-listed persons experienced the process of being on long-term sickness absent as very negative. The negative experiences are linked to consequences of stopping to work, consequences of social insurance rules and to negative encounters with professionals handling the sickness absence. The positive experiences of being sick-listed were few in the present study. There is a need to further examine the extent of these negative experiences are and how they affect sick-listed people's recovery and return to work. Long-term sickness absence; sick leave; experiences; interviews; phenomenology; Sweden.

  • 7.
    Mazaheri, Monir
    et al.
    Mälardalen University, School of Health, Care and Social Welfare, Health and Welfare. Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden; Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.
    Eriksson, Lars E.
    Karolinska Inst, Sweden; City University London, London, United Kingdom.
    Nasrabadi, Alireza Nikbakht
    Univ Tehran, Iran.
    Sunvisson, Helena
    Univ Örebro, Sweden.
    Heikkilä, Kristiina
    Karolinska Inst, Stockholm, Sweden; Linnaeus University, Kalmar, Sweden.
    Experiences of dementia in a foreign country: qualitative content analysis of interviews with people with dementia2014In: BMC Public Health, ISSN 1471-2458, E-ISSN 1471-2458, Vol. 14, no 4, article id 794Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Background: Dementia is a worldwide health concern of epidemic proportions. Research in the field of subjective experience of dementia suffers from a lack of diversity of their participants including immigrants. Different portraits of life with dementia could help us understand how people with dementia conceptualise their experiences of dementia and how they live. Our study aimed to explore the subjective experiences of living with dementia among Iranian immigrants in Sweden. Methods: Qualitative content analysis of interviews with fifteen people with dementia from Iranian immigrant backgrounds were conducted (8 females and 7 males). Results: Three themes and seven associated sub-themes were revealed. The themes included: Being a person with dementia means living with forgetfulness (personal sphere), living with forgetfulness in the private sphere means feeling incompetent but still loved, living with forgetfulness in the public sphere means feeling confident and secure but also isolated. Conclusions: Living with dementia for the participants meant living with forgetfulness. They experienced feeling incompetent but still loved within their families and feeling confident and secure but also isolated in the society. Educating people with dementia and their families about the course and process of dementia may help them understand the changes better and adjust their expectations. Our study can provide a basis for healthcare workers to understand the experiences of living with dementia from this specific perspective.

  • 8.
    Nohlert, E.
    et al.
    Centre for Clinical Research, Uppsala University, Västerås, Sweden.
    Öhrvik, J.
    Karolinska Institutet.
    Tegelberg, A.
    Centre for Clinical Research, Uppsala University, Västerås, Sweden.
    Tillgren, Per
    Mälardalen University, School of Health, Care and Social Welfare.
    Helgason, A. R.
    Karolinska Institutet.
    Long-term follow-up of a high- and a low-intensity smoking cessation intervention in a dental setting- a randomized trial2013In: BMC Public Health, ISSN 1471-2458, E-ISSN 1471-2458, Vol. 13, no 9, p. Article number: 592-Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Background: Achieving lifelong tobacco abstinence is an important public health goal. Most studies use 1-year follow-ups, but little is known about how good these are as proxies for long-term and life-long abstinence. Also, intervention intensity is an important issue for development of efficient and cost-effective cessation treatment protocols.The study aims were to assess the long-term effectiveness of a high- and a low-intensity treatment (HIT and LIT) for smoking cessation and to analyze to what extent 12-month abstinence predicted long-term abstinence. Methods. 300 smokers attending dental or general health care were randomly assigned to HIT or LIT at the public dental clinic. Main outcome measures were self-reported point prevalence, continuous abstinence (≥6 months), and sustained abstinence. The study was a follow-up after 5-8 years of a previously performed 12-month follow-up, both by postal questionnaires. Results: Response rate was 85% (n=241) of those still alive and living in Sweden. Abstinence rates were 8% higher in both programs at the long-term than at the 12-month follow-up. The difference of 7% between HIT and LIT had not change, being 31% vs. 24% for point prevalence and 26% vs. 19% for 6-month continuous abstinence, respectively. Significantly more participants in HIT (12%) than in LIT (5%) had been sustained abstinent (p=0.03). Logistic regression analyses showed that abstinence at 12-month follow-up was a strong predictor for abstinence at long-term follow-up. Conclusions: Abstinence at 12-month follow-up is a good predictor for long-term abstinence. The difference in outcome between HIT and LIT for smoking cessation remains at least 5-8 years after the intervention. Trial registration number. NCT00670514.

  • 9.
    Nohlert, Eva
    et al.
    Uppsala University, Central Hospital, Västerås, Sweden.
    Tegelberg, Åke
    Uppsala University, Central Hospital, Västerås, Sweden; Malmö University, Malmö, Sweden .
    Tillgren, Per
    Mälardalen University, School of Health, Care and Social Welfare. Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden.
    Johansson, Pia
    Stockholm County Council; Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden.
    Rosenblad, Anders
    Uppsala University, Central Hospital, Västerås, Sweden.
    Helgason, Asgier R
    Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden; Reykjavik University, Iceland .
    Comparison of a high and a low intensity smoking cessation intervention in a dentistry setting in Sweden: A randomized trial2009In: BMC Public Health, ISSN 1471-2458, E-ISSN 1471-2458, Vol. 9, no 121Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    BACKGROUND:

    Tobacco is still the number one life style risk factor for ill health and premature death and also one of the major contributors to oral problems and diseases. Dentistry may be a potential setting for several aspects of clinical public health interventions and there is a growing interest in several countries to develop tobacco cessation support in dentistry setting. The aim of the present study was to assess the relative effectiveness of a high intensity intervention compared with a low intensity intervention for smoking cessation support in a dental clinic setting.

    METHODS:

    300 smokers attending dental or general health care were randomly assigned to two arms and referred to the local dental clinic for smoking cessation support. One arm received support with low intensity treatment (LIT), whereas the other group was assigned to high intensity treatment (HIT) support. The main outcome measures included self-reported point prevalence and continuous abstinence (> or = 183 days) at the 12-month follow-up.

    RESULTS:

    Follow-up questionnaires were returned from 86% of the participants. People in the HIT-arm were twice as likely to report continuous abstinence compared with the LIT-arm (18% vs. 9%, p = 0.02). There was a difference (not significant) between the arms in point prevalence abstinence in favour of the HIT-protocol (23% vs. 16%). However, point prevalence cessation rates in the LIT-arm reporting additional support were relatively high (23%) compared with available data assessing abstinence in smokers trying to quit without professional support.

    CONCLUSION:

    Screening for willingness to quit smoking within the health care system and offering smoking cessation support within dentistry may be an effective model for smoking cessation support in Sweden. The LIT approach is less expensive and time consuming and may be appropriate as a first treatment option, but should be integrated with other forms of available support in the community. The more extensive and expensive HIT-protocol should be offered to those who are unable to quit with the LIT approach in combination with other support.

  • 10.
    Sandmark, Helene
    et al.
    Mälardalen University, School of Health, Care and Social Welfare.
    Renstig, Monica
    Womens Business Res Inst, Stockholm, Sweden.
    Understanding long-term sick leave in female white-collar workers with burnout andstress-related diagnoses: a qualitative study2010In: BMC Public Health, ISSN 1471-2458, E-ISSN 1471-2458, Vol. 10, p. Article Number: 210-Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Background: Sick leave rates in Sweden have been significant since the end of the 1990s. In this paper we focus on individual female white-collar workers and explore various factors and setting-based sources of ill health in working life and in private life, in order to understand impaired work ability, leading ultimately to long-term sick leave. 

    Methods: A qualitative methodology was chosen, and thematic, open-ended interviews were carried out with 16 women. The interviewees were strategically selected from a cohort of 300 women in full-time white-collar jobs in high-level positions, living in three urban areas in Sweden, and on long-term sick leave >= 90 days. A qualitative content analysis was carried out. 

    Results: The informants in the study were generally well educated, but a few had surprisingly little formal education considering their salary level and position on the labour market. The women were in professional positions more commonly held by men, either as specialists with some degree of managerial role or as executives with managerial responsibilities. Both external and internal stressors were identified. The analysis indicated that being in these gender-typed jobs could have induced sex discrimination and role conflicts. The women expressed strong agreement regarding success in working life, but emphasised the lack of competence matching in their present jobs. They also lacked the sense of having a rewarding job, saw leadership as weak, and disliked their present workplace and colleagues. Impaired health may have hindered them from changing jobs; conversely, their locked-in positions could have resulted in deterioration in their health status. The women displayed personal overcommitment, both at work and in private life, and had difficulties in setting limits.

     Conclusions: Factors in working life, as well as in private life, played an important role in the informants' deteriorated health and long-term sick leave. Job and workplace mismatching, problems in connection with company profitability, and poor leadership contributed to stress-related symptoms, resulting in reduced working capacity. On the basis of these findings, attention should be paid to identification of early indicators of exhaustion, and measures should be taken in work settings and in working life as a whole to promote retained work ability.

  • 11.
    Skagerström, Janna
    et al.
    Linköping Univ.
    Alehagen, Siw
    Fac Hlth Sci, Div Nursing Sci, Dept Med & Hlth Sci, SE-58185 Linköping.
    Häggstrom-Nordin, Elisabet
    Mälardalen University, School of Health, Care and Social Welfare, Health and Welfare.
    Arestedt, Kristofer
    Fac Hlth Sci, Div Nursing Sci, Dept Med & Hlth Sci, SE-58185 Linköping.
    Nilsen, Per
    Linköping Univ.
    Prevalence of alcohol use before and during pregnancy and predictors of drinking during pregnancy: a cross sectional study in Sweden2013In: BMC Public Health, ISSN 1471-2458, E-ISSN 1471-2458, Vol. 13, p. 780-Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Background: There is a paucity of research on predictors for drinking during pregnancy among women in Sweden and reported prevalence rates differ considerably between studies conducted at different antenatal care centres. Since this knowledge is relevant for preventive work the aim of this study was to investigate these issues using a multicenter approach. Methods: The study was conducted at 30 antenatal care centers across Sweden from November 2009 to December 2010. All women in pregnancy week 18 or more with a scheduled visit were asked to participate in the study. The questionnaire included questions on sociodemographic data, alcohol consumption prior to and during the pregnancy, tobacco use before and during pregnancy, and social support. Results: Questionnaires from 1594 women were included in the study. A majority, 84%, of the women reported alcohol consumption the year prior to pregnancy; about 14% were categorized as having hazardous consumption, here defined as a weekly consumption of > 9 standard drinks containing 12 grams of pure alcohol or drinking more than 4 standard drinks at the same occasion. Approximately 6% of the women consumed alcohol at least once after pregnancy recognition, of which 92% never drank more than 1 standard drink at a time. Of the women who were hazardous drinkers before pregnancy, 19% reduced their alcohol consumption when planning their pregnancy compared with 33% of the women with moderate alcohol consumption prior to pregnancy. Factors predicting alcohol consumption during pregnancy were older age, living in a large city, using tobacco during pregnancy, lower score for social support, stronger alcohol habit before pregnancy and higher score for social drinking motives. Conclusions: The prevalence of drinking during pregnancy is relatively low in Sweden. However, 84% of the women report drinking in the year preceding pregnancy and most of these women continue to drink until pregnancy recognition, which means that they might have consumed alcohol in early pregnancy. Six factors were found to predict alcohol consumption during pregnancy. These factors should be addressed in the work to prevent alcohol-exposed pregnancies.

  • 12.
    Skagerström, Janna
    et al.
    Linköpings universitet, Sweden.
    Häggström-Nordin, Elisabet
    Mälardalen University, School of Health, Care and Social Welfare, Health and Welfare. Kvinnors och barns hälsa, Uppsala universitet, Sweden.
    Alehagen, Siw
    Linköpings universitet, Sweden.
    The voice of non-pregnant women on alcohol consumption during pregnancy: A focus group study among women in Sweden2015In: BMC Public Health, ISSN 1471-2458, E-ISSN 1471-2458, Vol. 15, no 1, article id 1193Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Background: Consensus is that fetal exposure to alcohol is harmful. Abstinence while trying to conceive and throughout pregnancy is recommended. Despite this, there are many women who consume alcohol around conception and until pregnancy recognition. The aim of this study was to explore the voice of non-pregnant women concerning alcohol consumption and its relation to pregnancy.

    Methods: Data were collected through seven focus groups interviews with 34 women of fertile age, who were neither pregnant nor mothers. Semi-structured interviews were undertaken, recorded and transcribed verbatim and then analysed using thematic analysis.

    Results: Three main themes were identified in the analysis: an issue that cannot be ignored; awareness and uncertainty concerning alcohol and pregnancy; and transition to parenthood. Alcohol was an integral part of the women’s lives. A societal expectation to drink alcohol was prevalent and the women used different strategies to handle this expectation. Most women agreed not to drink alcohol during pregnancy although their knowledge on the specific consequences was scanty and they expressed a need for more information. Most of the participants found drinking alcohol during pregnancy to be irresponsible and saw pregnancy as a start of a new way of life.

    Conclusions: Social expectations concerning women’s alcohol use change with pregnancy when women are suddenly expected to abstain. Although most study participants shared an opinion for zero tolerance during pregnancy, their knowledge regarding consequences of drinking during pregnancy were sparse. In order for prospective mothers to make informed choices, there is a need for public health initiatives providing information on the relationship between alcohol consumption and reproduction.

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