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Arch Psychiatr Nurs. 1998 Feb;12(1):12-20.

The effects of postpartum depression on child development: a meta-analysis.

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School of Nursing, University of Connecticut, Storrs 06269-2026, USA.


The adverse, short-term effects of postpartum depression on maternal-infant interaction have been repeatedly documented. Are there long-term sequelae for children whose mothers had experienced postpartum depression? The purpose of this meta-analysis was to determine the magnitude of the effect of postpartum depression on the cognitive and emotional development of children older than the age of 1 year. Nine studies which met the sample criteria were included in this meta-analysis. Results indicated that postpartum depression had a small but significant effect on children's cognitive and emotional development. The r indicator for effect size ranged from .18 to .22 whereas the d indicator ranged from .36 to .45. Implications for future research are addressed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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