The Relationship Between Physical Activity Level and Fear of Birth (Tokophobia) in Pregnant Women


The aim of this study is to determine the effects of physical activity on fear of childbirth (tokophobia) in pregnant women.

Study Type

  • Study Type: Observational
  • Study Design
    • Time Perspective: Prospective
  • Study Primary Completion Date: July 1, 2021

Detailed Description

Fear of childbirth is defined as the fear felt and experienced before, during and after birth. Fear of childbirth is an acceptable level of fear and motivates the woman to prepare for the birth. However, if the fear developed before pregnancy and/or the severity of the fear increased during pregnancy, this situation is called "Tokophobia". Physical activity is defined as body movements that are performed by using the body's muscles and joints, require energy expenditure above the basal level, can be performed at different intensities, increase heart rate and respiration, and occur with the contraction of large muscle groups. It has been shown in the literature that physical activity in pregnant women contributes to the health of both the mother and the infant. Several studies have reported the benefits of physical activity and exercise in preventing many risks of pregnancy, including lowering the risks of excess weight gain, preeclampsia, gestational diabetes, gestational hypertension, prenatal depression and macrosomia, and improving psychological well-being. Despite the reported benefits of regular physical activity in the literature, it has been reported that the level of physical activity during pregnancy is lower compared to the pre-pregnancy period.

Arms, Groups and Cohorts

  • Healthy Pregnant
    • All volunteer pregnant women who were in the 2nd and 3rd trimesters (between 14-40 weeks) and who met the inclusion criteria in the study

Clinical Trial Outcome Measures

Primary Measures

  • Wijma Delivery Expectation/Experience Scale (W-DEQ)
    • Time Frame: Baseline
    • The “Wijma Delivery Expectation/Experience Scale (W-DEQ)” was developed by Klaas and Barbro Wijma, using the clinical experiences of women regarding the fear of childbirth. The W-DEQ scale version A was developed to measure the experiences of pregnant women before childbirth. Responses are on a six-point Likert-type scale from 0 to 5. 0 means “totally” and 5 as “not at all”. While the minimum score on this scale is 0, the maximum score is 165. Higher scores indicate that women have a higher fear of childbirth.
  • The Pregnancy Physical Activity Questionnaire
    • Time Frame: Baseline
    • The pregnancy physical activity questionnaire was developed by Lisa Chasan-Taber et al. in 2004 to determine the physical activity levels of pregnant women only. This questionnaire determines the activity level of pregnant women based on the time they spend during 32 activities.

Participating in This Clinical Trial

Inclusion Criteria

Having difficulty in communicating in order to understand and answer the evaluation questions correctly, Being at 14-40 weeks of gestation, Pregnancies with regular perinatal control. Exclusion Criteria:

Being chronically ill or obese Individuals with a history of orthopedic, neurological, rheumatological or cardiopulmonary disease or surgery, Having 2 or more miscarriages, Multiple pregnancy, High-risk pregnancy Continuous vaginal bleeding Pre-pregnancy Body Mass Index (BMI) less than 17.5.

Gender Eligibility: Female

Minimum Age: 18 Years

Maximum Age: 40 Years

Are Healthy Volunteers Accepted: Accepts Healthy Volunteers

Investigator Details

  • Lead Sponsor
    • Marmara University
  • Provider of Information About this Clinical Study
    • Principal Investigator: Ali Omer Acar, Physiotherapist – Marmara University
  • Overall Contact(s)
    • Ali Ömer Ö ACAR, Msc, +905378262790,

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