Efficacy of Progressive Muscle Relaxation on Pregnancy Outcome among Anxious Indian Primi Mothers

Singaravelu Rajeswari, Nellepalli SanjeevaReddy


Background: Progressive Muscle Relaxation (PMR) helps to improve the emotional state of antenatalmothers with stress and anxiety, which is necessary to keep the fetus healthy inside the womb. This study assesses the efficacy of progressive muscle repose on stress and anxiety among primigravidae.

Materials and Methods: Arandomized controlled study was conducted from May 2015 to June 2017 with 250 primigravidae. The women were assigned using a lottery method to interventionand control groups, 125 in each group. Information on background variables, pregnancy outcome,maternal complications, fetal complications, and postpartum depression was collected during the interval following delivery. PMR was the intervention (video) installed on one‑to‑one basis for two consecutive days. Pearson correlation, ANOVA, and regression analysis were used to evaluate the data to determine pregnancy outcome and performance of PMR.

Results: There was a significantreduction ((F3 = 24.81, p < 0.001) in all aspects of stress among the intervention and control groupsduring the posttest. The mean gestational age at birth was significantly different (F2 =6.08, p = 0.014)in the control group. There was significant increase in the occurrence of fetal complications such as birth asphyxia (F2 =5.67, p < 0.050), respiratory distress (F2 =8.68, p < 0.050), and jaundice (F2 =3.91,p < 0.050) in the control group. There was a negative correlation between PMR and stress (r= −0.22,p < 0.001), and PMR and state anxiety (r = −0.26, p < 0.001). There was an increased occurrenceof maternal complications among the control group in comparison with the intervention group.

Conclusions: The study suggests that PMR practice is useful during pregnancy to decrease stress,anxiety, and for reducing the occurrence of postpartum complications.



Anxiety, India, pregnancy outcome, progressive muscle relaxation, stress

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