The Chichewa Wijma delivery expectancy/experience questionnaire: a factor analytic study for postpartum women in Malawi

Madalitso Khwepeya, Roselyn Chipojola, Kaboni Whitney Gondwe, Hui Chuan Huang, Shu Yu Kuo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: To test the validity and reliability of the Chichewa Wijma Delivery Expectancy/Experience Questionnaire (W-DEQ) in Malawian postpartum women. Methods: A cross-sectional study of postnatal women (N= 415) at 1 day after vaginal birth was conducted at a district hospital in Malawi. The W-DEQ, Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale and the World Health Organization Quality of Life Scale were used to measure fear of birth (FOB), depressive symptoms and quality of life (QoL). Principal component analysis (PCA) and confirmatory factor analysis (CFA), Cronbach’s alpha, the average variance extracted (AVE) and the composite reliability (CR) and Pearson correlation were used to test the construct validity, reliability, convergent and divergent validity of the Chichewa W-DEQ (CW-DEQ). Results: The participants had a mean age of 28.3 ± 6.7 years. A multidimensional structure containing three factors–a lack of positive feelings, fear and concerns about childbirth–with an appropriate model fit was reported for the CW-DEQ version. The Cronbach’s α of the CW-DEQ was 0.87. The AVE and CR values were highly acceptable in lack of positive feelings–0.17 (0.68), and concerns about childbirth–0.79 (0.88) factors which proved the convergent validity of each; however, was marginally acceptable in the fear factor–0.14 (0.53). Low range of correlations between the CW-DEQ constructs (r = 0.27 ∼ 0.42, p <.001), confirmed the divergent validity. Conclusions: In this study, we found the CW-DEQ to be a reliable and valid tool for assessing FOB in postpartum women.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)593-600
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Psychosomatic Obstetrics and Gynaecology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2022


  • Fear of birth
  • Malawi
  • Wijma delivery experience questionnaire
  • confirmatory factor analysis
  • postpartum
  • principal component analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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