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Arch Womens Ment Health. 2010 Oct;13(5):411-5. doi: 10.1007/s00737-010-0161-7. Epub 2010 Apr 13.

Antenatal reports of pre-pregnancy abuse is associated with symptoms of depression in the postpartum period.

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Department of Psychiatry, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, One Gustave L. Levy Place, Box 1230, New York, NY 10029, USA.


The purpose of this study is to estimate characteristics predictive of postpartum mood change symptoms among urban women. Women receiving prenatal care at The Mount Sinai Hospital OB/GYN Diagnostic and Treatment Center and who delivered over one calendar year (2007; nā€‰=ā€‰884) were evaluated for psychosocial risk factors at their first prenatal visit and then subsequently for postpartum mood symptomatology (nā€‰=ā€‰510) at 6 weeks postpartum. Symptoms associated with postpartum depression (PPD) were best predicted by a pre-pregnancy history of physical or sexual abuse, a history of psychiatric problems, or psychiatric diagnosis at the time of first prenatal visit. This study provides the first large sample evidence that PPD is associated with the report of sexual or physical abuse. Screening for a history of abuse, a history of psychiatric problems, or having a psychiatric illness at the time of the first prenatal visit may be an efficient means to identify women at risk for developing PPD. Early identification of women at risk would provide an opportunity to provide a selective prevention intervention to reduce the likelihood of PPD symptomatology.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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