'He moved then?': The management of worry-indicative information requests in moderate and high-risk fetal ultrasounds release_bgaecgbmx5b5jkoauvjiikq3mi

by Minéia Frezza, Ana Cristina Ostermann

Published in Calidoscópio by UNISINOS - Universidade do Vale do Rio Dos Sinos.

2021   Volume 19, p174-192


The present study analyzes video-recorded fetal ultrasound scans held in a moderate and high-risk pregnancy ward at a Brazilian public hospital. Informed by Multimodal Conversation Analysis (Mondada, 2018), it investigates the ethnomethods participants employ to manage worry-indicative concerns whose presentation is initiated by pregnant women in a medical exam that does not typically comprise a specific phase for that (Nishizaka, 2010, 2011b, 2014). The analysis shows that pregnant women orient to three environments to request worry-indicative information: (i) topic, (ii) image, (iii) phase transition, tailoring the design of their requests to each particular environment. The findings reveal that pregnant women are highly agentive in finding optimal opportunities to raise their concerns and to mobilize health professionals to respond to them. The physicians performing the scans respond to those requests while dealing with the contingencies inherent to the context of fetal ultrasounds and that have implications in attending to the requests. The results unveil the interplay between the pregnant women's ethnomethods of raising concerns where 'normality' is constantly at stake and the health professionals' ethnomethods in attending to those demands while orchestrating the distinct semiotic resources involved in the multiactivity setting of ultrasound scans.
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Date   2021-09-03
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