Archives of Women's Mental Health

, Volume 14, Issue 2, pp 99–105 | Cite as

Risk factors for depressive symptoms during pregnancy

Original Article

Abstract

The present study examined risk factors for depression during pregnancy in a very large population sample. Two research questions have been addressed: first, the association between demographic factors and past negative obstetrical outcomes on depression severity scores, and second, the differences in these factors between women recruited at a university medical center and maternal health centers (MHC). The study included more than 5,000 pregnant women attending regular appointments at the University Obstetrics and Gynecology Clinic or at several MHCs in Eastern Iowa. Participants completed a Beck depression inventory (BDI) and a demographic questionnaire. We performed a statistical analysis on the association between risk factors and depression severity scores. Regression analysis revealed that week of pregnancy, site of recruitment, years of education, income, marital status, employment, and number of miscarriages and stillbirths were significant predictors of total BDI score. Compared to their university counterparts, participants at MHCs had more depressive symptoms, were younger, mostly single, and had lower socioeconomic status and more past negative obstetrical outcomes. Our study can inform providers about some of the risk factors during depression screening in pregnancy to increase diagnostic vigilance and tailor the level of prenatal care accordingly.

Keywords

Depression Pregnancy Antenatal Risk factors 

Notes

Acknowledgements

This research was supported in part by NIMH research grant MH59688.

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

References

  1. Beck A, Ward C, Mendelson M, Mock J, Erbaugh J (1961) An inventory for measuring depression. Arch Gen Psychiatry 4:53–63Google Scholar
  2. Bennett HA, Einarson A, Taddio A, Koren G, Einarson TR (2004) Prevalence of depression during pregnancy: systematic review. Obstet Gynecol 103(4):698–709 (Apr.) Review. Erratum in: Obstet Gynecol. 2004 103(6):1344 (Jun)Google Scholar
  3. Bernazzani O, Bifulco A (2003) Motherhood as a vulnerability factor in major depression: the role of negative pregnancy experiences. Soc Sci Med 56:1249–1260PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Bolton HL, Hughes PM, Turton P et al (1998) Incidence and demographic correlates of depressive symptoms during pregnancy in an inner London population. J Psychosom Obstet Gynaecol 19:202–209PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Bonari L, Pinto N, Ahn E, Einarson A, Steiner M, Koren G (2004) Perinatal risks of untreated depression during pregnancy. Can J Psychiatry 49(11):726–735, ReviewPubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. Bunevicius R, Kusminskas L, Bunevicius A, Nadisauskiene RJ, Jureniene K, Pop V (2009) Psychosocial risk factors for depression during pregnancy. Acta Obstet Gynecol Scand 88(5):599–605PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Evans J, Heron J, Francomb H, Oke S, Golding J (2001) Cohort study of depressed mood during pregnancy and after childbirth. Br Med J 323:257–260CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Field T, Diego M, Hernandez-Reif M (2002) Prenatal depression effects on the foetus and neonate in different ethnic and socio-economic status groups. J Reprod Infant Psychol 20:149–157CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Gotlib IH, Whiffen VE, Mount JH, Milne K, Cordy NI (1989) Prevalence rates and demographic characteristics associated with depression in pregnancy and the postpartum. J Consult Clin Psychol 57(2):269–274PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Holcomb WL Jr, Stone LS, Lustman PJ, Gavard JA, Mostello DJ (1996) Screening for depression in pregnancy: characteristics of the Beck Depression Inventory. Obstet Gynecol 88:1021–1025PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Hughes PM, Turton P, Evans CDH (1999) Stillbirth as risk factor for depression and anxiety in the subsequent pregnancy: cohort study. Br Med J 318:1721–1724Google Scholar
  12. Johanson R, Chapman G, Murray D, Johnson I, Cox J (2000) The North Staffordshire Maternity Hospital prospective study of pregnancy-associated depression. J Psychosom Obstet Gynaecol 21:93–97PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Klein MH, Essex MJ (1995) Pregnant or depressed? The effect of overlap between symptoms of depression and somatic complaints of pregnancy on rates of major depression in the second trimester. Depression 2:308–314CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Lancaster C, Gold K, Flynn H, Yoo H, Marcus S, Davis M (2010) Risk factors for depressive symptoms during pregnancy: a systematic review. Am J Obstet Gynecol 202(1):5–14PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Leigh B, Milgrom J (2008) Risk factors for antenatal depression, postnatal depression and parenting stress. BMC Psychiatry 8:24PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Marcus SM (2009) Depression during pregnancy: rates, risks and consequences. Motherisk Update 2008. Can J Clin Pharmacol 16(1):e15–e22, Epub 2009 Jan 22. ReviewPubMedGoogle Scholar
  17. O’Hara MW (1986) Social support, life events, and depression during pregnancy and the puerperium. Arch Gen Psychiatry 43:569–573PubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. Orr ST, Miller CA (1995) Maternal depressive symptoms and the risk of poor pregnancy outcome. Epidemiol Rev 17(1):165–171PubMedGoogle Scholar
  19. Rahman A, Iqbal Z, Bunn J, Lovel H, Harrington R (2004) Impact of maternal depression on infant nutritional status and illness: a cohort study. Arch Gen Psychiatry 61:946–952PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Rich-Edwards JW, Kleinman K, Abrams A, Harlow BL, McLaughlin TJ, Joffe H, Gillman MW (2006) Sociodemographic predictors of antenatal and postpartum depressive symptoms among women in a medical group practice. J Epidemiol Community Health 60(3):221–227PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Salamero M, Marcos T, Gutierrez F, Rebull E (1994) Factorial study of the BDI in pregnant women. Psychol Med 24:1031–1035PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Séguin L, Potvin L, St-Denis M, Loiselle J (1995) Chronic stressors, social support, and depression during pregnancy. Obstet Gynecol 85(4):583–589Google Scholar
  23. Zuckerman B, Amaro H, Bauchner H, Cabral H (1989) Depressive symptoms during pregnancy: relationship to poor health behaviors. Am J Obstet Gynecol 160(5 Pt 1):1107–1111PubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychiatryUniversity of IowaIowa CityUSA
  2. 2.Department of PsychologyUniversity of IowaIowa CityUSA
  3. 3.Iowa CityUSA
  4. 4.Iowa CityUSA

Personalised recommendations