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Hum Reprod. 2002 Oct;17(10):2580-4.

Depression as a potential causal factor in subsequent miscarriage in recurrent spontaneous aborters.

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Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Nagoya City University Medical School, Japan.



Unexplained miscarriage is speculated to be due to a Th1/Th2 cytokine imbalance at the feto-maternal interface and immunological functions are known to be under the influence of various psychological factors. Indeed, the psycho-neuro-immuno-endocrine network has been proposed to contribute to miscarriage. To assess whether psychological disorders might induce spontaneous abortion we carried out a prospective study to determine if any psychological parameter influenced risk in those patients with a history of recurrent miscarriages.


A prospective study was carried out on 61 patients with a history of two consecutive first-trimester miscarriages. A battery of self-report questionnaires including Symptom Checklist-90 Revised and the NEO Five Factor Index and semi-structured interviews were conducted before a subsequent pregnancy. We investigated whether or not these parameters predicted subsequent miscarriages.


Ten (22.2%) of the 45 patients who conceived miscarried again. Baseline depressive symptoms influenced subsequent miscarriage (P = 0.004). This statistically significant effect remained when we corrected with Bonfferoni adjustment (P = 0.036).


A high depression scale is associated with a high miscarriage rate in those patients suffering recurrent miscarriage.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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