Garment needs of pregnant women based on content analysis of in-depth interviews

Sin Man Simone Ho, Winnie W M Yu, Terence T. Lao, Daniel H K Chow, Joanne W Y Chung, Yi Li

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Aims. This study aims to identify the needs, concerns and problems of pregnant women when using maternity support garments. Background. Maternity support belt is regarded as helpful in reducing low back pain during pregnancy. However, several garment-related problems exist which might lead to poor adherence behaviour undermining the benefit of garment therapy. Design. A qualitative exploratory study. Methods. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 10 pregnant Chinese women who experienced low back pain during pregnancy. All the interviews followed an interview guide and different maternity support garments were shown to the participants as a method of tangible objects to stimulate responses. Content analysis was used to analyse the data. Results. The results showed that 60% of pregnant women discontinued using maternity support garments due to excessive heat, perceived ineffectiveness, itchiness, excessive pressure around the abdomen and inconvenience of adjustment. The content analysis generated five main themes of needs including effective function, safety, skin comfort, ease to put on and take off and aesthetics of maternity support garments. Discussion. The findings of the five main themes of needs were largely consistent with previous studies examining medical garments for overall satisfaction and compliance. The results revealed that women's physiological and psychological changes during pregnancy influenced their clothing preferences on both functional and aesthetical values. Conclusions. Maternity support garments are convenient and easily-accessible therapy to manage LBP during pregnancy and are frequently recommended and worn by pregnant women. However, inappropriate choice of garment therapy not only led to ineffectiveness but also undesirable effects. The key findings of the five main themes of garment needs in pregnant women will facilitate healthcare professionals in providing evidence-based advice to assist patients in the selection of an appropriate and optimal maternity support garment. Relevance to clinical practice. These recommendations in the clinical practice will assist patients in making well informed treatment decisions and ultimately improve the quality of care.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2426-2435
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Clinical Nursing
Issue number17
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2009


  • Garment therapy
  • Low back pain
  • Maternity
  • Midwifery
  • Nursing
  • Pregnant

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing(all)


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