Buy this Article for $7.95

Have a coupon or promotional code? Enter it here:

When you buy this you'll get access to the ePub version, a downloadable PDF, and the ability to print the full article.


Mothers, Neonatal intensive care unit, Phenomenology, Pregnancy.



  1. Funaba, Yuki RMN, PHN, MSN, RN
  2. Yokoo, Kyoko RMN, MSN, PhD, RN
  3. Ozawa, Mio PHN, MSN, PhD, RN
  4. Fujimoto, Saori RNM, PHN, MSN, PhD, RN
  5. Kido, Yuko RNM, PHN, MSN, RN
  6. Fukuhara, Rie MD


Purpose: To understand experiences of mothers who had a baby hospitalized in the NICU and then decided to have another pregnancy.


Study Design and Methods: We used a descriptive phenomenological approach to study 12 mothers in Japan who had a child hospitalized in the NICU and had a subsequent child. Data were collected by semistructured interviews that occurred two to four times per participant. Data were analyzed using Colaizzi's method.


Results: Although all of the mothers had a child who was making steady progress, they experienced difficulty when deciding on having another pregnancy. Our analysis identified five theme clusters: delaying pregnancy; unwavering view about having subsequent children; changing values regarding pregnancy and childbirth; relief of anxiety and fear about repeated hospitalization in the NICU; and preparedness to accept the outcome of pregnancy.


Clinical Implications: Our study suggests that mothers require support during babies' hospitalization in the NICU and for the process of decision-making about a subsequent pregnancy. Family-centered care as the basis for nursing practice in the NICU is ideal to provide this type of support.