Most Popular Articles

Complications of Cesarean Birth: Clinical Recommendations for Prevention and Management

Burke, Carol; Allen, Roma

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 45(2):92-99, March/April 2020.

Maternal morbidity and mortality is significantly increased with cesarean birth as compared to vaginal birth. In this clinical review, strategies for prevention and management of three complications of cesarean birth are presented; postpartum hemorrhage, surgical site infection, and venous thromboembolism. Pertinent patient safety bundles, toolkits, protocols, and national standards and guidelines are applied to care of women having cesarean birth.

Benefits of Mother–Baby Skin-to-Skin Contact

Spatz, Diane L.

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 47(3):170, May/June 2022.

Skin-to-skin contact has numerous benefits for newborns including supporting breastfeeding. Our breastfeeding expert, Dr. Spatz, reviews some of the most recent systematic reviews and meta-analyses on skin-to-skin contact and offers suggestions for improving rates on maternity units.

Sudden Unexpected Postnatal Collapse Resulting in Newborn Death in the United States

Anderson, Tatiana M.; Ferres, Juan M. Lavista; Ramirez, Jan-Marino; More

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 46(3):130-136, May/June 2021.

The sudden collapse of an apparently healthy newborn, known as sudden unexpected postnatal collapse (SUPC), is fatal in about half of cases. Death of a healthy newborn in the hospital setting is tragic; some cases are likely preventable. In this study, analysis of SUPC cases from 2003 to 2013 involving review of over 41 million US births found a rate of SUPC of 1.5/100,000 live births with an estimated 22% occurring in the hospital setting. Newborn hospital safety recommendations from the Association Women's Health, Obstetric, and Neonatal Nurses and other professional organizations are included.

New Mothers' Perceptions of Pressure to Breastfeed

Korth, Christina X.; Keim, Sarah A.; Crerand, Canice E.; More

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 47(3):160-167, May/June 2022.

This study reports on a measure to quantitatively assess perceived pressure to breastfeed and examines associations between perceived pressure, emotional distress, the breastfeeding experience, and self-efficacy among women with 2 to 6-month-old infants. Women reported themselves and society as the greatest sources of pressure. Pressure to breastfeed was negatively associated with the breastfeeding experience. Perceived pressure to breastfeed may be an important psychosocial factor to consider for improving women's breastfeeding experiences. Reducing perceived pressure may be beneficial for helping women meet their breastfeeding goals.

Protecting Patients and Retaining Nurses

Logsdon, M. Cynthia

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 47(3):121, May/June 2022.

The nursing shortage, caused in part, and exacerbated by the pandemic is going to need a lot of collective effort for resolution. Nurses are reporting job stress, dissatisfaction, and burnout. The American Nurses Association asked the United States Department of Health and Human Services to declare the nurse staffing shortage a national crisis.

Postpartum Pain Management

Wisner, Kirsten

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 47(1):52, January/February 2022.

Postpartum pain is common and may interfere with a patient's selfcare and infant care. Untreated pain has been associated with postpartum depression, persistent pain, and higher use of opioids. Our maternity nursing expert, Dr. Wisner, provides a summary of a new American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists Clinical Consensus guideline on pharmacologic pain management for acute perineal, uterine, and incisional pain in the postpartum period.

Perspectives of Women Giving Birth during the COVID-19 Pandemic and Their Nurses

Callister, Lynn Clark

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 47(3):171, May/June 2022.

The prolonged COVID-19 global pandemic has had a profound effect on the lived experiences of birthing women and their nurses. Our global health and nursing expert, Dr. Callister, reviews some of the recent data on how women giving birth and maternity nurses are coping with the changes in care conditions due to the pandemic.

Burnout and Turnover among NICU Nurses

Thomas, Anisa O.; Bakas, Tamilyn; Miller, Elaine; More

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 47(1):33-39, January/February 2022.

Work-related burnout, characterized by emotional exhaustion, depersonalization, and personal accomplishment, has been associated with nurses' intent to leave their job. In this study of nurses in the neonatal intensive care unit, 16.9% of left their position over an 11-month period and a majority of reported moderate to high levels of emotional exhaustion. No association was found between any dimension of burnout and odds of turnover; however, burnout may have other negative consequences for both neonatal intensive care nurses and infants, and merits further exploration.

Quality Improvement and Participation in Perinatal Quality Collaboratives Promote Patient Safety

Simpson, Kathleen Rice

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 47(3):175, May/June 2022.

In August 2021, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services issued new requirements for hospitals with maternity services to report participation in perinatal quality collaboratives and adoption of perinatal patient safety bundles. A summary of the requirements and implications for practice is provided.

Marijuana and Breastfeeding

Spatz, Diane L.

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 47(1):54, January/February 2022.

Marijuana use among adults of childbearing age has increased over the years, including during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Our breastfeeding expert, Dr. Spatz, reviews the evidence for transmission of components of marijuana to breastmilk and what that means for babies who are being breastfed.

Gestational Hypertension and Preeclampsia

Wisner, Kirsten

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 44(3):170, May/June 2019.

Hypertensive disorders of pregnancy continue to be a major contributor to maternal and perinatal morbidity and mortality. A summary of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists updated guidelines for diagnosis and management of these disorders is presented by our maternity nursing expert Kirsten Wisner.

Impact of Social Media on Adolescents

Beal, Judy A.

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 47(2):108, March/April 2022.

Recent evidence suggests social media can have a negative effect on adolescents. Whistle-blower testimony before the United States Congress in Fall 2021 emphasized the knowledge that social media companies have about these effects and their lack of action to make their platforms safer for adolescents. Our pediatric nursing expert, Dr. Beal, covers this controversy and how pediatric nurses can help parents promote better use of social media for their children.

Newborn Safety Bundle to Prevent Falls and Promote Safe Sleep

Lipke, Bethann; Gilbert, Gael; Shimer, Heather; More

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 43(1):32-37, January/February 2018.

It is not uncommon for mothers to fall asleep while holding their baby during postpartum hospitalization. In this context, newborn babies are at risk for falls and suffocation. The clinical team at one hospital developed a newborn infant safety bundle to promote safe sleep and minimize risk of infant falls and drops. Results are promising in preventing unsafe sleep conditions and newborn falls.

Identifying Obstetric Mistreatment Experiences in U.S. Birth Narratives: Application of Internationally Informed Mistreatment Typologies

Tello, Hannah J.; Téllez, Dylan J.; Gonzales, Joseph E.

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 47(3):138-146, May/June 2022.

Women may experience a tramatic birth when they perceive they have not been respected, listened to, or treated kindly during the childbirth process. Procedures and protocols that are routine to nurses, midwives, and physicians are not always understood or desired by women giving birth. In this study, narratives of women who gave birth in the United States reveal more effort is needed to make sure all those who experience childbirth are treated with the respect they deserve.

Reducing the Stigmatization of Teen Mothers

SmithBattle, Lee I.

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 38(4):235-241, July/August 2013.

Nurses are urged to advocate for services and policies that reduce the stigmatization and marginalization of teen mothers.

Pediatric Providers Are Not Following Guidance on Peanut Allergy in Infants

Beal, Judy A.

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 47(3):169, May/June 2022.

Guidelines on minimizing risks of infants developing peanut allergies were published in 2017 by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. Recent evidence suggests these guidelines are not being followed. Our pediatric nursing expert, Dr. Beal, summarizes the guidelines, offers resources to direct parents and caregivers who request more information, and highlights the important role of pediatric nurses in educating parents and caregivers.

Inclusive and Respectful Language in Scholarly Writing and Speaking

Simpson, Kathleen Rice

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 45(4):196, July/August 2020.

Inclusive and respectful language in manuscripts published in MCN is an important consideration in writing for the journal and editing accepted articles. As use of gender-neutral language and descriptions of race and ethnicity evolve and value-laden words are scrutinized, we will be helping authors make sure their scholarly work is appropriately presented in MCN.

Perceptions of Adult Women on Losing Their Mothers at an Early Age: Implications for Nursing Care During Childbirth

Gunn, Jennie; Huebner, Carroll Gunn; McCoy, Kristen

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 43(3):126-132, May/June 2018.

Loss of mother during childhood can be a devastating blow to the child, with multiple implications that last a lifetime. In this study, adult women who lost their mother during childhood share their perceptions of how this loss has affected many aspects of their life. The researchers offer suggestions for incorporating the findings into nursing care of women in this unique group during the childbirth process.

Nurse Staffing, Missed Care, and Risk of Patient Mortality

Simpson, Kathleen Rice

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 47(2):115, March/April 2022.

Perinatal patient safety depends on adequate nurse staffing. When nurses are working short-staffed, essential aspects of nursing care can be missed, which increases risk of adverse patient outcomes. Examples of risks of patient morbidity and mortality associated with missed nursing care are presented.

Pediatric Intramuscular Injections: Guidelines for Best Practice

Rishovd, Abby

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 39(2):107-112, March/April 2014.

Nurses deliver the vast majority of intramuscular injections to pediatric patients, usually in the form of vaccines. Dr. Kaniaris gives you the latest, most important evidence on how to administer IMs to children.

Oral Sucrose Versus Breastfeeding in Managing Infants' Immunization-Related Pain: A Randomized Controlled Trial

Gad, Rasha F.; Dowling, Donna A.; Abusaad, Fawzia E.; More

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 44(2):108-114, March/April 2019.

Immunization is one of the most painful procedures in infancy and causes anxiety and distress for infants and their parents. In this randomized controlled trial, during immunization, 120 babies up to six months old were randomized to breastfeeding, oral sucrose, or the usual comforting measures. Measures of pain were lower in the breastfeeding group. Breastfeeding during immunization should be offered to women and their babies routinely as a pain avoidance procedure.

A Quality Improvement Initiative to Reduce Opioid Consumption after Cesarean Birth

Burgess, Adriane; Harris, Amy; Wheeling, Julia; More

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 44(5):250-259, September/October 2019.

Reevaluation of routine prescription of opioids for postoperative pain has been one of the many responses to the opioid crisis in the United States. In this quality improvement project, an interdisciplinary team developed a bundle of nurse-initiated comfort measures to offer additional options for pain relief for women after cesarean birth. Provider order sets and prescribing practices were changed. Data were collected over the first year of the project. Opioid use during hospitalization and the amount prescribed at discharge decreased while patient satisfaction improved. Pain relief options as adjuncts to medication can be successfully integrated into clinical practice.

Culturally Sensitive Care of Immigrant and Refugee Mothers with Babies in the NICU

Callister, Lynn Clark

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 47(1):55, January/February 2022.

Immigrant and refugee mothers with babies in the NICU face many challenges including barriers due to language, culture, unfamiliar hospital procedures, and lack of trust. Our global health and nursing expert, Dr. Callister, reviews recent studies on how to promote effective communication and culturally competent care of this vulnerable population.

Association Between Lactation and Postpartum Blood Pressure in Women with Preeclampsia

Burgess, Adriane; McDowell, Wendy; Ebersold, Stacie

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 44(2):86-93, March/April 2019.

Women who have preeclampsia are at increased risk for cardiovascular disease later in life. Breastfeeding has been shown to be cardioprotective. In this study of women who had preeclampsia, there was a significant difference in systolic and diastolic blood pressure between those who were breastfeeding and those who were not at the initial postpartum visit. Women who have preeclampsia need information about potential benefits of breastfeeding as well as their risk of cardiovascular disease as they get older.

Implications of Preterm Birth for Maternal Mental Health and Infant Development

Anderson, Cheryl; Cacola, Priscila

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 42(2):108-114, March/April 2017.

Preterm birth can be a traumatic event as it is many times unexpected and often leads to admission to the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). Mothers of infants in the NICU experience stress that can progress to depressive symptoms and posttraumatic stress disorder. These mental health issues can have a negative impact on maternal-infant attachment and infant development.

Nurse Staffing and Care During the Immediate Postpartum Recovery Period

Simpson, Kathleen Rice

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 40(6):403, November/December 2015.

The first hours after birth are a time of joy and excitement, but also are associated with risk. What can you do to make sure the mother and baby are safe as they transition physiologically during the immediate postpartum recovery period? What standards and guidelines promote maternal and newborn safety during this time?

PRENATAL BREASTFEEDING EDUCATION and Breastfeeding Outcomes

Rosen, Irene M.; Krueger, Mary V.; Carney, Lorraine M.; More

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 33(5):315-319, September-October 2008.

Breastfeeding is best. We all know that. Does it matter what type of breastfeeding class is offered to women? Do prenatal classes result in higher rates of breastfeeding than postpartum classes?

Maternal Mortality in the United States

Simpson, Kathleen Rice

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 44(5):249, September/October 2019.

Maternal mortality rates in the United States compare very unfavorably with other high-income countries. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that about 700 women die of pregnancy-related causes in the United States each year. A summary of their May 2019 report is presented. Nurses must continue to take a leadership role in efforts to reduce the unacceptably high maternal mortality in the United States.

Fetal Heart Monitoring Prior to Cesarean Birth

Wisner, Kirsten

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 40(3):193, May/June 2015.

What is recommended for fetal assessment prior to cesarean birth? Do all women need continuous electronic fetal monitoring?

Neonatal Nurses' Perceptions of Palliative Care in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit

Chin, Susan Di Nonno; Paraszczuk, Ann Marie; Eckardt, Patricia; More

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 46(5):250-257, September/October 2021.

Guidelines for neonatal palliative care have existed for over 20 years, yet less than 4% of children who meet criteria for palliative care receive these services. Neonatal intensive care unit nurses are uniquely positioned to influence end-of-life care for infants and their families' experiences. N = 200 neonatal intensive care nurses in the United States participated in a survey about neonatal palliative care. Nurses who work in a unit with a neonatal palliative care policy and who have received palliative care education demonstrated more favorable attitudes toward neonatal palliative care. Policy and educational programs are important strategies to promote high-quality care for high-risk infants and their families.

Application of Caring Theory to Nursing Care of Women Experiencing Stillbirth

Nurse-Clarke, Natasha; DiCicco-Bloom, Barbara; Limbo, Rana

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 44(1):27-32, January/February 2019.

Swanson's theory of caring has application to nursing care of women experiencing stillbirth. In this study, 20 labor and birth nurses share their perceptions of caring for women who have had a stillbirth. Findings suggest the five caring processes described by Swanson enhance the nurse-patient relationship and the bereaved mother's wellbeing.

Immigrant Women's Experiences as Mothers in the United States: A Scoping Review

Oerther, Sarah; Lach, Helen W.; Oerther, Daniel

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 45(1):6-16, January/February 2020.

Since 1970, the increase in U.S. births has been driven in part by immigrant mothers. While mothering is a universal experience among women who have children, little is known about the broad experiences of immigrant women from different cultures who are mothering in the United States. In this scoping review, gaps in the literature are identified and recommendations for future research are offered.

Impact of the Quality of Postpartum Sleep and its Health Determinants on Human Milk Volume

Carrega, Joanna; Lee, Shih-Yu; Clark, Patricia; More

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 45(5):289-295, September/October 2020.

In this study of new mothers, the relationship between sleep quality and breast milk volume was explored. Most women reported substantial sleep disturbance during the first month postpartum. Poor sleep quality was a significant predictor for lower milk volume.

Randomized Controlled Trial of Use of the Peanut Ball During Labor

Roth, Cheryl; Dent, Sarah A.; Parfitt, Sheryl E.; More

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 41(3):140-146, May/June 2016.

The peanut ball is a specific type of birthing ball used by some women in labor. It may be helpful in maternal positioning and promoting labor progress. A randomized trial of peanut ball use is reported.

Threats to Patient Safety in the Inpatient Maternity Setting

O'Neill, Loraine; Miller, Lisa A.; Rohan, Annie J.

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 45(2):74-81, March/April 2020.

As part of our special topics issue on inpatient maternity care, three nurse experts were asked to offer their thoughts about the main issues putting mothers and babies at risk in the hospital setting and what quality and safety practices may be beneficial in keeping them safe from harm.

Childhood Obesity

Beal, Judy A.

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 41(1):59, January/February 2016.

Childhood obesity is a major public health problem that has immediate and long-term sequelae including: high cholesterol or high blood pressure, diabetes, bone and joint disorders, sleep apnea, and social and emotional problems. Obese children and adolescents are highly likely to remain obese as adults and therefore develop serious adult health problems of diabetes, heart disease, stroke, cancer, and osteoarthritis. Our pediatric nursing expert, Dr. Beal, provides an update.

Clinician Perspectives of Barriers in Perinatal Palliative Care

Wool, Charlotte

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 40(1):44-50, January/February 2015.

Perinatal palliative care supports families anticipating fetal or neonatal demise. This study measured barriers physicians and advance practice nurses report in providing and referring patients to these types of programs.

Delaying the First Newborn Bath and Exclusive Breastfeeding

Long, Kathleen; Rondinelli, June; Yim, Ashley; More

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 45(2):110-115, March/April 2020.

Delaying the first newborn bath has been suggested as a strategy to improve exclusive breastfeeding rates during postpartum hospitalization. In this study, exclusive breastfeeding rates were compared before and after a change in practice in newborn bathing in a maternity unit where exclusive breastfeeding rates were higher than average rates in the United States. The practice change was successful and sustained over 10 months, but did not significantly increase the rate of exclusive breastfeeding among the mother-infant cohorts studied.

A System-Wide Approach to Prevention of In-Hospital Newborn Falls

Carr, Hester; Crotto, Joshua; Demirel, Shaban; More

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 44(2):100-107, March/April 2019.

There has been a lot of attention to decreasing newborn falls in the inpatient setting. In this quality improvement project, after reviewing their event data and current evidence, one health system implemented a number of interventions to decrease the rate of newborn falls.

Preterm Labor and Birth: A Clinical Review

Griggs, Kellie M.; Hrelic, Debra A.; Williams, Nina; More

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 45(6):328-337, November/December 2020.

An overview of current evidence on risk factors and treatment for preterm labor and birth is presented.

Reducing Discomfort After Cesarean Birth Using Abdominal Binders

Tussey, Christina; Kelly, Lesly A.; Oja, Kenneth J.; More

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 44(6):310-316, November/December 2019.

There is great interest in options for enhancing pain relief measures that do not involve opioids for women after cesarean birth. This randomized controlled trial evaluated use of an abdominal binder for women after cesarean birth. Findings suggest abdominal binders can decrease pain related to ambulation, potentially enhancing postoperative recovery. As a nursing intervention, abdominal binders may offer women a safe nonpharmacologic option to provide comfort.

Galactagogues and Lactation: Considerations for Counseling Breastfeeding Mothers

Balkam, Jane J.

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 47(3):130-137, May/June 2022.

Galactagogues are sometimes used by new mothers who are breastfeeding to enhance their milk supply. However, there is minimal evidence that these products are safe or efficacious. Since they are considered dietary supplements, they are not reviewed or regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. In this article, the evidence and lack thereof for galactagogues to increase breast milk supply are reviewed. Nurses can use this information to help breastfeeding mothers make an informed decision about galactagogues and temper their expectations of these products in successfully solving a milk supply issue.

Emollients to Prevent Eczema in High-Risk Infants: Integrative Review

Armstrong, Julie; Rosinski, Nicole K.; Fial, Alissa; More

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 47(3):122-129, May/June 2022.

Atopic dermatitis (AD), also known as eczema, is a common chronic inflammatory skin disorder. Topical emollients have been hypothesized to enhance the skin barrier and therefore be helpful as a preventative measure. In this integrative review, evidence for treating AD is reviewed. Based on findings from two high quality randomized trials, clinicians should not recommend use of emollients to prevent AD. Evidence-based recommendations for infant skin care, includes bathing with water or a combination of water and liquid cleanser formulated for infants, and avoiding soaps. Products applied to skin should be free of scent and contact allergens. Petroleum jelly or mineral oil are appropriate to moisturize infants' skin as needed. Nurses can use these findings to inform their recommendations to parents.

Postpartum Depression in American Indian/Alaska Native Women: A Scoping Review

Heck, Jennifer L.

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 46(1):6-13, January/February 2021.

American Indian, Native Alaskan, and Indigenous women are not well represented in the postpartum depression literature. In this review, gaps in the literature are identified and suggestions for future research are offered.

Care During Pregnancy, Childbirth, Postpartum, and Human Milk Feeding for Individuals Who Identify as LGBTQ+

Griggs, Kellie M.; Waddill, Colette B.; Bice, April; More

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 46(1):43-53, January/February 2021.

Individuals who identify as LGBTQ+ need and deserve respectful, affirming, compassionate care during pregnancy, labor, birth, postpartum, and human milk feeding. A review is offered to promote high quality nursing care for this population. Details of providing human milk including inducing lactation and co-lactating are covered in detail.

Social Determinants of Maternal Health and Birth Outcomes

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 42(1):7, January/February 2017.

Social determinants of health such as racial discrimination, poor quality neighborhoods, and acculturation may increase risk of negative mental health and birth outcomes for minority women in the United States. Nurses can take leadership roles in creating policies that promote economic development, reduce poverty, reduce residential segregation, promote healthier neighborhoods, and support immigrant women.

Paths to Motherhood for Women with Cystic Fibrosis

Bray, Leigh Ann; Campbell, Caitlin Marley; Brown, Janet; More

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 47(3):147-153, May/June 2022.

Cystic fibrosis is no longer a disease limited to childhood. With medical advancements, many patients with cystic fibrosis live into adulthood and consider becoming mothers, however available options and their reproductive decision-making process are not well understood. In this study women with cystic fibrosis describe their decision-making as they considered various options for motherhood.

A Case Study of Postpartum Depression & Altered Maternal-Newborn Attachment

Zauderer, Cheryl R.

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 33(3):173-178, May-June 2008.

This new mother suffered from PPD and was helped by this nurse practitioner. Find out what happened.

Perinatal Care of Childhood Sexual Abuse Survivors: Scoping Review

Head, Morgan L.; Heck, Jennifer L.

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 47(3):154-159, May/June 2022.

Survivors of childhood sexual abuse need sensitive nursing care during labor and birth. Procedures and exams may be triggering of the abuse. Consent to touch is critical. In this scoping review of perinatal care of childhood survivors of sexual abuse, voices of women are highlighted and their suggestions for how to improve care during the childbirth process are identified. Experiences of survivors of childhood sexual abuse when receiving maternity care need more research to promote safe and effective perinatal nursing care for this vulnerable population.

Compassion Fatigue Among Pediatric Healthcare Providers

Branch, Carole; Klinkenberg, Dean

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 40(3):160-166, May/June 2015.

Pediatric nurses caring for chronically and acutely ill children are at increased risk for developing compassion fatigue. This study evaluated compassion fatigue of pediatric nurses and allied health professionals in an academic pediatric hospital. Based on results, a program that includes recognition of signs of burnout and compassion fatigue and self-help measures has been developed and implemented at the hospital.

Managing Gestational Diabetes Postpartum

Killion, Molly M.

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 43(4):231, July/August 2018.

Women who develop gestational diabetes during pregnancy are at increased risk for the disease in future pregnancies and for type 2 diabetes later in life. Our maternity nursing expert, Molly Killion, discusses important information that should be offered to women with gestational diabetes during the postpartum period so they can plan lifestyle modifications to promote optimal health.

Transgender Men and Lactation: What Nurses Need to Know

Wolfe-Roubatis, Emily; Spatz, Diane L.

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 40(1):32-38, January/February 2015.

Many perinatal nurses have little knowledge of transgender men and their healthcare needs during their childbirth experience. Valuable information is presented that will be helpful in caring for this unique subset of childbearing patients.

Prenatal Care for American Indian Women

Johnson, Mary Beth

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 45(4):221-227, July/August 2020.

American Indian women face many challenges in accessing maternal and infant care during pregnancy, birth, and postpartum. A review of the evidence is presented with suggestions for home visits as a potential solution to improve maternity care access and enhance outcomes.

Considerations for Active Labor Management with Oxytocin: More May Not be Better

Simpson, Kathleen Rice

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 45(4):248, July/August 2020.

Recent evidence suggests an oxytocin “rest” or discontinuing oxytocin once active labor has been established may be one way to minimize labor complications and decrease risk of cesarean birth for some women.

Screen Time and Toddlers: New Evidence on Potentially Negative Effects

Beal, Judy A.

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 45(4):241, July/August 2020.

As more evidence becomes available about the negative effects of screen time for young children, pediatric nurses can help parents develop a family plan to minimize risk from exposure to excessive screen time. Our pediatric nursing expert, Dr. Beal, explains the new evidence on screen time and toddlers.

Maternal Mental Health

Simpson, Kathleen Rice

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 47(1):59, January/February 2022.

Approximately 1 out of 5 women experience a mental health condition such as anxiety or depression during pregnancy or postpartum. Routine screening and timely referral and treatment are key to promoting optimal outcomes for mothers and babies. While screening during postpartum visits is becoming more common, adding screening for mothers of babies in the NICU and during well baby visits can help to make sure all new mothers are included.

Cry It Out: What Is It and Is It Appropriate?

Beal, Judy A.

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 42(3):180, May/June 2017.

Infant wakefulness at night is common. New parents often turn to the Internet for what to do when they encounter issues with their new baby that they're not sure how to handle, however, there are multiple websites offering advice that is not evidence-based. Our pediatric nursing expert, Dr. Beal, provides the most recent information on infant wakefulness at night for nurses to be able offer helpful advice to parents.

The American Nurses Association's White Paper on Nurse Staffing : Clinical and Economic Benefits of Appropriate Staffing

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 41(3):139, May/June 2016.

The American Nurses Association has published a new white paper on nurse staffing Optimal Nurse Staffing to Improve Quality of Care and Patient Outcomes. All nurses should review this document to be up-to-date on the latest evidence linking appropriate nurse staffing to better outcomes for patients.

Measuring Blood Loss in Obstetric Hemorrhage

Wisner, Kirsten

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 45(3):184, May/June 2020.

Obstetric hemorrhage is a major contributor to maternal morbidity and mortality in the United States. Many of these deaths are preventable. Our maternity nursing expert, Dr. Wisner, reviews quantification of blood loss for all women after birth, based on recommendations from the Association of Women's Health, Obstetric, and Neonatal Nurses, and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.

Mothers Who Engage in Long-Term Informal Milk Sharing

McNally, Deirdre; Spatz, Diane L.

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 45(6):338-343, November/December 2020.

When some new mothers are unable to breastfeed, they seek human milk through informal sources, usually located on line. Three new mothers who obtained human milk for their babies via informal milk sharing networks offer insight into their experiences. Suggestions for helping nurses, midwives, physicians, and other health care providers become more familiar with this process and offer support to their patients are included.

The Built Environment and Birth Outcomes: A Systematic Review

Nowak, Alexandra L.; Giurgescu, Carmen

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 42(1):14-20, January/February 2017.

A poor-quality built environment may be related to negative birth outcomes such as preterm birth and low birthweight infants by increasing psychological stress and/or depressive symptoms for pregnant women. African American women are more likely to live in poor-quality built environments compared with white women and therefore may be at greater risk.

Sudden Unexplained Infant Deaths: New Study Findings Related to Day of Life

Beal, Judy A.

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 45(3):185, May/June 2020.

New data on classification and risk factors for sudden unexplained infant deaths based on age of infants at death have been published. Our pediatric nursing expert, Dr. Beal, explains the study findings and how they can help nurses promote safe infant sleep.

Relationship Between Infant Tongue-Tie and Maternal Wellbeing

Hill, Rebecca R.; Wong, John; Parikh, Gayatri S.

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 46(5):258-263, September/October 2021.

Tongue-tie is a mild oral anomaly that can cause feeding challenges, especially for breastfeeding mothers and infants. Delayed diagnosis may increase risk of maternal stress and impaired mother-infant bonding when feeding does not go as planned. Findings from this study of 113 mothers of infants with tongue-tie included importance of its early assessment, diagnosis, and management. Partner support is helpful in fostering the mother-infant relationship. More research is needed to understand barriers to appropriate referrals and to delay in treatment of tongue-tie.

Sepsis in Pregnancy and Postpartum

Simpson, Kathleen Rice

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 44(5):304, September/October 2019.

Sepsis in pregnancy and postpartum is a major cause of maternal death in the United States. As part of the continuing focus on preventing maternal mortality, new resources are reviewed, including the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine Consult Series on sepsis during pregnancy and the puerperium. Working together as part of an interdisciplinary team requires that all members of the team have knowledge of the most recent clinical guidelines and the ability to apply them to clinical practice.

Owning our Professional Practice: Back to Basics

Wisner, Kirsten

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 47(3):168, May/June 2022.

Perinatal nurses have multiple options to keep up to date about the latest evidence and clinical practice standards and guidelines. Our maternity nursing expert, Dr. Wisner, offers suggestions including becoming a member of our professional organization, the Association of Women's Health, Obstetric, and Neonatal Nurses, becoming certified in one or more perinatal nursing or interdisciplinary certification processes through the National Certification Corporation, and establishing a process for routine review of evidence, guidelines, and standards from professional nursing and medical organizations that support perinatal care givers.

Anemia in Pregnancy: Screening and Clinical Management Strategies

Stanley, Angela Y.; Wallace, Jerrol B.; Hernandez, Andrea M.; More

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 47(1):25-32, January/February 2022.

Anemia during pregnancy can lead to adverse maternal and newborn outcomes. Current recommendations for screening and treatment of anemia during pregnancy are covered in detail with guidance for incorporating them into clinical practice.

Exercise and Stress in At-Risk Women during Pregnancy and Postpartum

Guo, Yuqing; Kehoe, Priscilla; Pimentel, Pamela; More

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 46(4):217-222, July/August 2021.

Exercise during pregnancy and postpartum may be a stress-reducing activity. In this study, 114 women participating in a home visit program offered their thoughts and experiences about the potential benefits of exercise in reducing stress via questionnaires and detailed interviews. Perinatal nurses can suggest exercise to women during pregnancy and postpartum as one way to promote their health and decrease stress.

Maternal Mortality Among Indigenous Peoples

Heck, Jennifer L.

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 46(1):59, January/February 2021.

Indigenous women have more adverse pregnancy outcomes when compared to women of other ethnic groups. Our guest global health and nursing columnist, Dr. Heck, highlights these disparities in the United States and across the world.

Substance Use Disorder: Prenatal, Intrapartum and Postpartum Care

Mahoney, Kathleen; Reich, Wendy; Urbanek, Susan

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 44(5):284-288, September/October 2019.

There has been a dramatic increase in the United States in the number of women who present with substance use disorder during pregnancy. An overview of care for women with substance use disorder during the childbearing process continuum is provided.

Vaginal Seeding of Babies Born via Cesarean

Simpson, Kathleen Rice

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 43(1):60, January/February 2018.

With growing interest in the microbiome and its implications for health, more research is evolving on how interventions during labor and birth influence newborn and infant microbiota. Some parents are requesting vaginal seeding of their babies born via cesarean. Possible benefits are theoretical and research to date is quite limited, however, there are significant potential risks of unintended harm if infection is transferred to the baby with this procedure. A brief summary of vaginal seeding is offered with recommendations for practice.

Breastfeeding Challenges

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 44(2):65, March/April 2019.

Most women intend to breastfeed; however, many women experience various challenges in reaching their breastfeeding goals. A summary of the articles in our special topics series on breastfeeding challenges is offered.

Kangaroo Care at Birth for Full Term Infants: A Pilot Study

WALTERS, MARY W.; BOGGS, KIM M.; LUDINGTON-HOE, SUSAN; More

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 32(6):375-381, November-December 2007.

Can kangaroo care at the time of birth influence newborn skin temperature, blood glucose, and initiation of breastfeeding?

Black Lives Matter: COVID, Crisis, and Color

Rohan, Annie J.; Simpson, Kathleen Rice

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 46(1):5, January/February 2021.

The COVID-19 pandemic has been stressful for nurses and childbearing women. Some women have experienced this stress more than others because they are disadvantaged, underserved, and have limited resources. Black women are especially at risk for poor pregnancy outcomes, not due to their race, but rather the long-standing structural racism and discrimination that are embedded in our health care system and society. MCN joins with other nursing organizations in recognizing racism as a public health crisis, one that nurses can do much to mitigate by their hands-on care, institutional and organizational leadership, policy making, and advocacy.

Relief of Pain During Blood Specimen Collection in Pediatric Patients

Inal, Sevil; Kelleci, Meral

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 37(5):339-345, September/October 2012.

External cold and vibration stimulation effectively reduced pain and anxiety during blood specimen collection in pediatric patients.

Interdisciplinary Collaboration in Maternal Mental Health

Selix, Nancy; Henshaw, Erin; Barrera, Alinne; More

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 42(4):226-231, July/August 2017.

Creating an interdisciplinary approach for maternal mental health that includes professionals involved in policy, research, community advocacy, and clinical practice can improve access to care, streamline services, and improve maternal health outcomes. This article offers examples of interdisciplinary approaches that blend technology, education, research, policy, primary care, and mental health services and discusses their benefits and challenges for maternal mental health services.

Toxic Stress in Children

Beal, Judy A.

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 44(1):53, January/February 2019.

The recent controversy over the policy on immigration and subsequent treatment of immigrant children has resurfaced concerns about toxic stress in children. Our pediatric nursing expert, Dr. Beal, explains the clinical implications for children and the role of the nurse.

Resilience and Burnout in Pediatric Nurses in a Tertiary Children's Hospital

Waterworth, Susan; Grace, Anna-Marie

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 46(3):168-173, May/June 2021.

Increased patient complexity and inadequate nurse staffing contribute to nurse burnout. In this study of pediatric nurses at a children's hospital in New Zealand, nurses reported high levels of burn out and low levels of resilience. Burn out was associated with specific types of pediatric units and emotional exhaustion. Burn out is common among inpatient nurses.

Changing the Prenatal Care Paradigm to Improve Breastfeeding Outcomes

Spatz, Diane L.

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 45(3):186, May/June 2020.

A new paradigm for teaching families about benefits of breastfeeding is needed to help all mothers meet their breastfeeding goals. During prenatal care, breastfeeding should be discussed at every visit. Our breastfeeding expert, Dr. Spatz, describes the new paradigm and how to incorporate it into clinical practice.

Latinx Family Perspectives on Social Needs Screening and Referral during Well-Child Visits

Spain, Angeline K.; Monahan, Emma K.; Alvarez, Kiara; More

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 46(3):143-149, May/June 2021.

In this study, Latinx parents' perspectives on screening and referral approaches to identify social determinants of health and address social and material needs during well-child visits were evaluated using focus groups. Parents were asked to identify techniques that promote their engagement with screening and referral. They reported greater participation and satisfaction when they perceived an emotional connection with nurses and other clinicians whose efforts to ensure their screening responses accurately reflected family needs and priorities.

Clinical Implications of Fetal Heart Rate Interpretation Based on Underlying Physiology

O'Brien-Abel, Nancy

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 45(2):82-91, March/April 2020.

Understanding the physiology of fetal oxygenation and various influences on the fetal heart rate supports nurses, midwives, and physicians in interpreting and managing electronic fetal heart rate tracings during labor and birth. A review and update on clinical implications of fetal heart rate pattern interpretation based on underlying physiology is presented.

Women's Experiences with Tandem Breastfeeding

O'rourke, Molly Patricia; Spatz, Diane Lynn

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 44(4):220-227, July/August 2019.

Some mothers are reluctant to wean their child due to a subsequent pregnancy and may breastfeed throughout their second pregnancy, give birth to their second child, and simultaneously breastfeed two children. These mothers are engaged in tandem breastfeeding. In this study, the biological and emotional considerations of tandem breastfeeding are reviewed and women who have experience with tandem breastfeeding offer practical suggestions for nurses.

Parental Decision Making in Male Circumcision

Sardi, Lauren; Livingston, Kathy

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 40(2):110-115, March/April 2015.

How do parents make the decision to have their newborn baby boy circumcised? What do they need to know and how can nurses make sure they have adequate information to make a truly informed decision?

Psychosocial Factors and Preterm Birth Among Black Mothers and Fathers

Giurgescu, Carmen; Misra, Dawn P.

MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. 43(5):245-251, September/October 2018.

Black mother-Black father couples are two times more likely to have preterm birth compared to White mother-White father couples. In a review of the literature, potential factors for this disparity are explored. Gaps in evidence are highlighted. Suggestions for action based on what is known are offered.