Effects of Parental Soothing Behavior on Stress Levels of 2-8 Year Old Children During Voiding Cystourethrograms by Phase of Procedure

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Abstract

Using the example of a voiding cystourethrogram (VCUG), a painful radiological procedure, this study investigated whether parental soothing behavior (reassuring comments like “it's almost over” or “You're O.K.” and soothing by “sh, sh”) in one phase of the procedure influenced the child's distress in the following phase. The sample was comprised of 68 2-8 year-old children and the accompanying parent(s). Child and parental behavior during the VCUG was coded using a standardized rating scale (CAMPIS-R). Parental reassurance during the anticipatory phase significantly increased the child's distress of the following phase, while parental “sh, sh” significantly reduced it. Both parental behaviors showed no significant effect on the child's distress of the following phase when applied during the procedure itself. Results underline the importance of differentiating between anticipatory and procedural phases of the VCUG. Counselling methods for parents on more appropriate strategies to assist their children during procedural phases of the VCUG are necessary.

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