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Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2007 Jun 1;32(13):1430-6.

Pelvic girdle pain and lumbar pain in relation to postpartum depressive symptoms.

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  • 1Department of Health and Society, Division of Physiotherapy, Link√∂ping University, Link√∂ping, Sweden.



A cohort study.


To investigate the possible association of lumbopelvic pain and postpartum depression and differences in the prevalence of depressive symptoms among women without lumbopelvic pain and women classified as having pelvic girdle pain (PGP) and/or lumbar pain.


Lumbopelvic pain and depression are common pregnancy complications, but their comorbidity has rarely been evaluated and has not been studied in relation to subgroups of lumbopelvic pain.


In a cohort of consecutively enrolled pregnant women, the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale was used to evaluate depressive symptoms at 3 months postpartum, applying a primary screening cutoff of > or =10 and a cutoff of > or =13 for probable depression. Women were classified into lumbopelvic pain subgroups by means of mechanical assessment of the lumbar spine, standard history, pelvic pain provocation tests, a pain drawing, and the active straight leg raising test.


The postpartum cohort (n = 267) comprised 180 (67%) women without lumbopelvic pain, 44 (16%) with PGP, 29 (11%) with lumbar pain, and 14 (5%) with combined PGP and lumbar pain. Applying a cutoff of > or =10, postpartum depressive symptoms were more prevalent in women with lumbopelvic pain (27 of 87, 31%; 95% confidence interval, 26%-36%) than in women without lumbopelvic pain (17 of 180, 9%; 95% confidence interval, 5%-13%; P < 0.001). The comorbidity of lumbopelvic pain and depressive symptoms was 10%. Depressive symptoms were more prevalent in women with lumbar pain versus women without lumbopelvic pain when applying cutoffs of > or =10 or > or =13 (P < or = 0.002); whereas for women with PGP, this comparison was significant only at the screening level of > or =10 (P = 0.01).


Postpartum depressive symptoms were 3 times more prevalent in women having lumbopelvic pain than in those without. This comorbidity highlights the need to consider both symptoms in treatment strategies.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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