An exploration of connections between a mother and her unborn in preterm labor

Jay M Milstein, A. Jain

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The purpose of this special feature is to elaborate on a unique physician-patient interaction between a neonatologist and a pediatrician established during the pediatrician's personal experience with the onset of labor between 22 and 23 weeks gestation. As the two are both versed in conventional aspects of neonatal care including prenatal counseling, the neonatologist thought that he had more to offer the expectant mother holistically. Thus, he decided against approaching her as an information source and contribute to the customary data-dumping format that can be both frightening and dehumanizing. Instead, he wanted to focus on her individual experience of pregnancy and the healing aspects of care. The most important lesson received from the interaction is the value of being present with another. This sense of being with applied to the neonatologist and the mother from their initial phone conversation to their in person times, and to the mother with her unborn permitting interaction in a meaningful way. Fostering each of those connections in alternative ways was valuable in this prenatal experience.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)325-327
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of Perinatology
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2012


  • alternative therapies
  • being with
  • compassionate presence
  • connections
  • preterm labor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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