SciELO - Scientific Electronic Library Online

vol.13 issue3International cooperation in health: the Special Service of Public Health and its nursing programInformação científica, educação médica e políticas de saúde: a Organização Pan-Americana da Saúde e a criação da Biblioteca Regional de Medicina - Bireme author indexsubject indexarticles search
Home Page  

Services on Demand




Related links


Ciência & Saúde Coletiva

On-line version ISSN 1678-4561Print version ISSN 1413-8123


FLEISCHER, Soraya. Come on my child, let's have some massage?"Puxação", midwives and reproduction in Melgaço, Pará. Ciênc. saúde coletiva [online]. 2008, vol.13, n.3, pp.889-898. ISSN 1678-4561.

This article presents ethnographic data, collected between 2004 and 2005, about the obstetric service offered by a group of 21 midwives in the city of Melgaço, state of Pará, Brazil. The literature has largely described the work of midwives in Brazil and in many other countries around the world. However, there is a kind of practice, which was analyzed very scarcely up to now. The objective of this article is to discuss precisely the practice called puxação, an abdominal massage performed mainly on pregnant women to alleviate indispositions, inform the position and sex of the fetus, help define the date and place of delivery, socialize women for maternity and put pregnancy into the context of the local patterns of reproduction, family, well being and health. It can be observed that these midwives offer a very suitable and appropriate pre-natal service, well adapted to the specific needs of the women of the town. Even though homebirth has been slowly giving way to hospital birth, this personalized service and practice keeps increasing.

Keywords : Midwives; Puxação; Homebirth; Pará.

        · abstract in Portuguese     · text in Portuguese     · Portuguese ( pdf )