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Asia Pac Psychiatry. 2013 Apr;5 Suppl 1:7-13. doi: 10.1111/appy.12036.

Risk factors for depression and anxiety among pregnant women in Hospital Tuanku Bainun, Ipoh, Malaysia.

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Population Health and Preventive Medicine, Faculty of Medicine Universiti Teknologi MARA, Shah Alam, Selangor, Malaysia.



Anxiety and depression are prevalent during pregnancy. Estimates of the prevalence of anxiety and depression during pregnancy vary according to the criteria used, variable methodologies and population characteristics.


A cross-sectional survey design was used. A total of 175 antenatal mothers participated. Their socio-demographic and obstetric histories were recorded. The Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS) and Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview (M.I.N.I.) were used.


The prevalence of anxiety and depression disorders among antenatal mothers using diagnostic clinical interview were 9.1% and 8.6%, respectively. Factors associated with antenatal anxiety were marital status (being unmarried), positive history of mental illness, gestational age (<20 weeks), unplanned pregnancy and depressive comorbidity. However, only gestational age of less than 20 weeks and depressive disorder remained significant factors in the multivariate analysis.


The prevalence rate of antenatal depression detected by HADS screening was comparable to the rate from diagnostic interview, but there was a slight overestimation for antenatal anxiety. Nonetheless, HADS as a screening tool offers a practical solution for detecting these two conditions in a busy antenatal clinic or a large epidemiological survey. In view of the deleterious effects of antenatal anxiety and depression on mothers and children, these two conditions should be screened and managed appropriately.


antenatal anxiety; depression; risk factor

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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