Relationship between postpartum mood disorder and birth experience: a prospective observational study.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

BACKGROUND: This study aims to investigate the relationship between the birth experience and the risk of developing postpartum depression or post-traumatic stress disorder. METHODS: In this prospective, longitudinal, observational study, women were assessed at different time points for depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. The risk of depression or post-traumatic stress disorder based on patient characteristics and specific birth events was assessed within three months postpartum. RESULTS: We enrolled 600 women; 426 were eligible for postpartum assessment. At six weeks and three months postpartum, 15.9% and 12.7% screened positive for depression respectively. Positive post-traumatic stress disorder screenings at six weeks and three months postpartum were 6.2% and 5.1% respectively. Twenty-seven women (8.3%) with a negative screening at six weeks converted to a positive depression or post-traumatic stress disorder screening at three months. A pre-existing history of anxiety or depression was associated with an increased risk of developing depression (aOR 2.12, 95% CI 1.30 to 3.47) and post-traumatic stress (aOR 3.15, 95% CI 1.42 to 7.02) within three months postpartum. The risk of developing post-traumatic stress disorder within three months postpartum was also increased among patients experiencing their first delivery (aOR 2.55, 95% CI 1.10 to 5.88) or operative management of postpartum hemorrhage (aOR 4.44, 95% CI 1.16 to 17.02). CONCLUSION: Depression and post-traumatic stress symptoms either persisted or had new onset at three months postpartum. Mental health screening and postpartum follow-up after six weeks should be considered in high-risk patients who have a history of psychopathology, nulliparity, or undergo operative management of postpartum hemorrhage.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Kountanis, JA; Muzik, M; Chang, T; Langen, E; Cassidy, R; Mashour, GA; Bauer, ME

Published Date

  • November 2020

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 44 /

Start / End Page

  • 90 - 99

PubMed ID

  • 32861082

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1532-3374

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.ijoa.2020.07.008


  • eng

Conference Location

  • Netherlands