Off-campus Pacific University users: To download campus access theses and dissertations, please log into our proxy server with your PUNet ID and password.

Non-Pacific University users: Please talk to your librarian about requesting this thesis or dissertation through interlibrary loan.

Theses or dissertations that have a specific embargo period indicated below will not be available to anyone until the date indicated.

Date of Award


Degree Type

Thesis (On-Campus Access Only)

Degree Name

Master of Physical Therapy (MPT)

First Advisor

Daiva A Banaitis, PhD, PT

Second Advisor

Nancy A Cicirello, MPH, PT


Many health care providers, as well as pregnant women, believe it is not safe to assume the supine position during pregnancy due to potential harmful effects to the fetus. This study was undertaken to determine a safe time frame pregnant women can remain in the supine position during their third trimester without significant fetal heart rate. changes. The fetal heart rate (FHR) and maternal blood pressure of fifteen pregnant women (N = 15) in their third trimester was monitored for ten minutes in the side-lying position and twenty minutes in the supine. Data was analyzed using ANOVA. The results indicate no statistically or clinically significant differences between the two positions on the FHR over time. Based on the results of this study it is safe for most women to lie on their backs for up to twenty minutes during their third trimester of pregnancy, without detrimental effects to the fetus.


The digital version of this project is currently unavailable to off-campus users not affiliated with Pacific University; however, it may be accessed on campus or through interlibrary loan (for eligible borrowers) from Pacific University Library. Pacific University Library is a free lender.