Psychosis and pregnancy: Some new ethical and legal dilemmas for the physician

E. Earlene Dal Pozzo, Frank H. Marsh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Physicians who treat women of childbearing age may encounter the presentation of psychosis in a pregnant woman that presents special problems in diagnosis and treatment, particularly ethical and legal considerations that center on the rights of the mother as well as the continually evolving definition of fetal rights. This article represents a collaborative effort to address these considerations. Representative case material from the treatment of a psychotic pregnant patient is presented with a focus on the nature of the contractual relationship of the treating physician with the mother and fetus.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)425-427
Number of pages3
JournalAmerican Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1987
Externally publishedYes


  • Privacy
  • best interests
  • compelling interest
  • fetal viability
  • predicability of harm


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