Archives of Women's Mental Health

, Volume 22, Issue 5, pp 631–635 | Cite as

Type of delivery is not associated with maternal depression

  • Alexandre Faisal-CuryEmail author
  • Paulo Rossi Menezes
Short Communication


Although many women experience depressive symptoms during the first year after childbirth, the relationship between type of delivery and maternal depression is not clear. The purpose of this study is to evaluate relationship between type of delivery and maternal depression, between 6 to 16 months after childbirth. We performed a prospective cohort study of 558 low–socioeconomic status pregnant women without depression. All participants were recruited from primary care clinics of the public sector in three administrative districts in the Western area of the city of São Paulo, Brazil. Depressive symptoms were assessed using the Self-Report Questionnaire (SRQ-20). Type of delivery was classified as uncomplicated spontaneous vaginal delivery (UVD) (no episiotomy and no more than a first-degree perineal laceration), complicated vaginal delivery (CVD) (episiotomy or more than a second-degree perineal laceration), and cesarean delivery (CD). Data about type of delivery were extracted from medical charts. Crude and adjusted risk ratios with 95% confidence intervals were estimated using Poisson regression with robust variance estimates to examine the association between type of delivery with maternal depression. Among 482 women reassessed during 6 to 16 months after delivery, 18% had symptoms of depression. According to the type of delivery, 250 (51.8%), 85 (21.7%), and 147 (30.5%) were UVD, CVD, and CD, respectively. There was no association between type of delivery and maternal depression. In comparison with women submitted to uncomplicated vaginal, women who had a cesarean or perineal trauma/episiotomy did not show greater risk of maternal depression, in the medium to long term after delivery.


Maternal depression Pregnancy Postpartum Mental disorder Mode of delivery Type of delivery 


Financial support

The study was funded by FAPESP (2003/08553-7). Paulo Rossi Menezes was partially funded by the CNPq-Brazil. Alexandre Faisal-Cury received postdoctoral fellowships from the CNPq-Brazil and FAPESP (2005/04572-2).

Compliance with ethical standards

The Ethics Committee of the University of São Paulo, School of Medicine, approved the research project (Number 206/2004—approval date 07/2004).

Conflict of interest

The authors delcare that they no conflicts of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Austria, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Preventive Medicine DepartmentUniversidade de São PauloSão PauloBrazil
  2. 2.Departamento de Medicina Preventiva, Faculdade de MedicinaUniversidade de São PauloSão PauloBrazil

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