The impact of hypertension, hemorrhage, and other maternal morbidities on functioning in the postpartum period as assessed by the WHODAS 2.0 36-item tool

Publication Type:
Journal Article
International Journal of Gynecology and Obstetrics, 2018, 141 pp. 55 - 60
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© 2018 World Health Organization; licensed by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics. Objective: To assess the scores of postpartum women using the WHO Disability Assessment Schedule 2.0 36-item tool (WHODAS-36), considering different morbidities. Methods: Secondary analysis of a retrospective cohort of women who delivered at a referral maternity in Brazil and were classified with and without severe maternal morbidity (SMM). WHODAS-36 was used to assess functioning in postpartum women. Percentile distribution of total WHODAS score was compared across three groups: Percentile (P)<10, 1090. Cases of SMM were categorized and WHODAS-36 score was assessed according to hypertension, hemorrhage, or other conditions. Results: A total of 638 women were enrolled: 64 had mean scores below P<10 (1.09) and 66 were above P>90 (41.3). Of women scoring above P>90, those with morbidity had a higher mean score than those without (44.6% vs 36.8%, P=0.879). Women with higher WHODAS-36 scores presented more complications during pregnancy, especially hypertension (47.0% vs 37.5%, P=0.09). Mean scores among women with any complication were higher than those with no morbidity (19.0 vs 14.2, P=0.01). WHODAS-36 scores were higher among women with hypertensive complications (19.9 vs 16.0, P=0.004), but lower among those with hemorrhagic complications (13.8 vs 17.7, P=0.09). Conclusions: Complications during pregnancy, childbirth, and the puerperium increase long-term WHODAS-36 scores, demonstrating a persistent impact on functioning among women, up to 5 years postpartum.
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