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Risk factors for postpartum depression among abused and nonabused women

Published:October 01, 2012DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ajog.2012.09.022

      Objective

      The objective of the study was to compare risk factors for postpartum depression among women exposed vs not exposed to intimate partner violence and to assess the timing of abuse in relation to postpartum depression.

      Study Design

      This was a retrospective cohort study utilizing data from the Canadian Maternity Experiences Survey, a telephone survey at 5-10 months postpartum. Survey questions were adapted from the Canadian Violence Against Women Survey and the Edinburgh Post-Natal Depression Scale.

      Results

      Among abused women, younger (15-19 years), and older (35 years old and older), age was associated with postpartum depression, adjusted odds ratio (aOR, 2.29; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.17–4.51) and (aOR, 2.33; 95% CI, 1.02–5.34) as was unemployment (aOR, 1.41; 95% CI, 1.06–1.84), foreign birth (aOR, 2.04; 95% CI, 1.35–3.09], and low income (aOR, 1.68; 95% CI, 1.25–2.25) among nonabused women. Postpartum depression was significantly associated with abuse occurring only prior to pregnancy (aOR, 3.28; 95% CI, 1.86–5.81), starting postpartum (aOR, 4.76; 95% CI, 1.41–16.02), and resuming postpartum (aOR, 3.81; 95% CI, 1.22–11.88).

      Conclusion

      Among pregnant women, subgroups defined by abuse exposure differ in their risk profile for postpartum depression.

      Key words

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