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Br J Psychiatry. 1989 Jun;154:813-7.

The use of rating scales to identify post-natal depression.

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  • 1Department of Psychological Medicine, University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff.


One hundred and forty-seven mothers were screened for major depression at six to eight weeks post-partum. Using predetermined cut-off points, the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale and the Beck scale were compared in their abilities to identify the 15% of subjects who had major depression according to DSM-III criteria. The sensitivity of Edinburgh scale was 95% and its specificity 93%. The performance of the Beck scale was markedly inferior, with a sensitivity of 68% and specificity of 88%.

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