Archives of Women's Mental Health

, Volume 17, Issue 1, pp 41–48 | Cite as

The Postpartum Worry Scale–Revised: an initial validation of a measure of postpartum worry

  • Tracy E. MoranEmail author
  • Joshua R. Polanin
  • Amy Wenzel
Original Article


Postpartum anxiety is a condition of concern due to associated difficulties for the mother, her relationships, and her infant’s development. We revised one measure of postpartum anxiety symptoms, the Postpartum Worry Scale (PWS) to include items that tap concerns related to infant health and development, important potential domains of postpartum worry. This study presents the initial phase of validation for the PWS-R. An online sample of 1,231 mothers of infants ages birth to 24 months completed the PWS-R as well as a battery of measures. We conducted a split-sample confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) to assess the latent factor structure, and a series of models were tested to refine the measure. The newly constructed factors were correlated with theoretically similar measures to test the construct validity. Initial model testing revealed a four-factor structure (i.e., Relationships, Household, Time Allocations, and Health and Development) that included 13 items. Two-group CFA confirmed the latent factor structure. Theoretically similar measures correlated moderately with the newly created PWS-R factors. The psychometric findings for the PWS-R provide preliminary support for its use as a measure of postpartum worry. Next steps in the iterative validation process are considered. Recommendations for the PWS-R’s use in clinical and research contexts are discussed.


Postpartum anxiety Worry Validation Measure 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Wien 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tracy E. Moran
    • 1
    Email author
  • Joshua R. Polanin
    • 2
  • Amy Wenzel
    • 3
  1. 1.Erikson InstituteChicagoUSA
  2. 2.School of EducationLoyola University ChicagoChicagoUSA
  3. 3.Aaron T. Beck Psychopathology Research Center, Department of PsychiatryUniversity of PennsylvaniaPhiladelphiaUSA

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