Background and aim: Some physical, emotional and social changes arise in mothers during the postpartum periods which can affect the quality of life (QOL) of the mother and family. Given the importance of the quality of life in the postpartum period and its influencing factors such as method of delivery, the present study aimed at investigating the relationship between the quality of life and methods of delivery in the world, using a systematic review and meta-analysis method.
Methods: The present study is a systematic review and meta-analysis on the relationship between aspects of quality of life and method of delivery in the world conducted in Persian and English language articles published by the end of 2015. For this purpose, the databases of Medlib, SID, Scopus, ISI Web of Science, PubMed, Google scholar, Irandoc, Magiran and Iranmedex were searched using key words and their compounds. The results of studies were combined using the random effects model in the meta-analysis. Heterogeneity of studies was assessed using I2 index and Cochran test and data were analyzed using STATA Version 11.1 and SPSS Version 16. 
Results: Based on the results of the meta-analysis of studies, the aspect of physical functioning had the highest quality of life mean score in women with vaginal delivery: 74.37 (95% CI: 67.7-81) and mental health had the highest QOL mean score in women with cesarean delivery: 65.8 (95% CI: 62.7-69). Also, based on the time elapsed since delivery, mental health had the highest mean score in less than 1 month, 2 months and 4 months’ postpartum. Physical pain had the highest mean score 6 months after giving birth, and mental functioning in 8 months after giving birth. 
Conclusions: The results of the present meta-analysis showed that the mean scores for most dimensions of quality of life in women with vaginal delivery were higher than in women with cesarean delivery.


Keywords: Quality of life, Method of delivery, Systematic review, Meta-analysis


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