This paper describes a study of biomedical and psychosocial risks and the perinatal outcome. Two hundred nineteen pregnant women completed three instruments to identify their biomedical and psychosocial risk: anxiety, family function, life events. Biomedical risk was assessed through analyses of self-reported health histories. Information on complications of pregnancy, labor, and delivery was obtained from the hospital delivery records. In the sample studied, biomedical risk alone was not substantially related to perinatal complications. Four psychosocial items were the best psychosocial predictors of perinatal complications: emotional tension; depressive humor; neurovegetative symptoms of anxiety; and dissatisfaction with the time, space, and money shared with the family (p < 0.05). The interaction between these critical psychosocial items and biomedical risk also reliably predicted complications (p < 0.00001). The results of this study suggest that psychosocial risk assessment alone and in interaction with biomedical risk assessment may significantly improve the ability to identify women who may experience perinatal complications.
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