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Risk Factors for Post-Natal Depression

Abstract: Which women are more likely to suffer from postpartum depression?

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Risk Factors for Post-Natal Depression

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Question(s): 
Written by: , lecturer of Psychiatry in the University of Ioannina Medical School, Greece. Eva Gerasi, postgraduate student in the Department of Psychiatry, University Hospital of Ioannina, Greece.
First version: 22 Jul 2008.
Latest revision: 30 Jul 2008.

Which women are more likely to suffer from postpartum depression?

Answer:

Post-natal depression is associated more than would be expected normally with ante-natal problems (such as eclampsia), complicated labours and ceasarean deliveries. It is more common in women with a previous episode of post-natal depression, in women who are uncertain or unhappy about having a child, and in those who lack support in the form of a confiding relationship, including single mothers. Also women with a history of recurrent episodes of depression, and who discontinue antidepressant maintenance therapy during pregnancy are at a higher risk of a recurrence postpartum.
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