Archives of Women's Mental Health

, Volume 15, Issue 6, pp 469–480

Proof of concept: Partner-Assisted Interpersonal Psychotherapy for perinatal depression

  • Anna R. Brandon
  • Nadia Ceccotti
  • Linda S. Hynan
  • Geetha Shivakumar
  • Neysa Johnson
  • Robin B. Jarrett
Original Article

DOI: 10.1007/s00737-012-0311-1

Cite this article as:
Brandon, A.R., Ceccotti, N., Hynan, L.S. et al. Arch Womens Ment Health (2012) 15: 469. doi:10.1007/s00737-012-0311-1

Abstract

Although poor partner support is a key risk factor for depression in pregnant and postpartum women, partners are not generally involved in treatment beyond psychoeducation. The aim of this "proof of concept" study was to test safety, acceptability, and feasibility of Partner-Assisted Interpersonal Psychotherapy (PA-IPT), an intervention that includes the partner as an active participant throughout treatment. Women more than 12 weeks estimated gestational age and less than 12 weeks postpartum were invited to participate if they fulfilled DSM-IV criteria for Major Depressive Disorder and reported moderate symptom severity (HAM-D17 ≥16). The open trial included eight acute-phase sessions and a 6-week follow-up assessment. Ten couples completed the acute phase treatment and nine presented for a 6-week follow-up assessment. There were no study-related adverse events, and no women had symptomatic worsening from intake to Session Eight. All partners attended all sessions, no couples dropped out of treatment, and all reported positive treatment satisfaction at the conclusion of the study. Nine of ten women (90 %) met the criteria for clinical response (HAM-D17 = 9) at the conclusion of acute phase treatment, and eight of the nine (89 %) presenting at a 6-week follow-up assessment met criteria for symptomatic recovery. Incorporating partners in the treatment of major depressive disorders during the perinatal period is safe, acceptable, and feasible, but needs further testing in a larger population to evaluate efficacy.

Keywords

Postpartum depression Perinatal Pregnancy Antenatal Depression Partners 

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Wien 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anna R. Brandon
    • 1
    • 2
    • 5
  • Nadia Ceccotti
    • 2
  • Linda S. Hynan
    • 2
    • 3
  • Geetha Shivakumar
    • 2
    • 4
  • Neysa Johnson
    • 2
  • Robin B. Jarrett
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Psychiatry, Women’s Mood Disorders CenterUniversity of North Carolina at Chapel HillChapel HillUSA
  2. 2.Department of PsychiatryUniversity of Texas Southwestern Medical CenterDallasUSA
  3. 3.Department of Clinical SciencesThe University of Texas Southwestern Medical CenterDallasUSA
  4. 4.Dallas VA MedicalCenter, DallasUSA
  5. 5.Department of Psychiatry, 10616 Neurosciences HospitalUniversity of North Carolina at Chapel HillChapel HillUSA

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