Postpartum depression assessments at well-baby visits: screening feasibility, prevalence, and risk factors.J Womens Health (Larchmt). 2005 Dec; 14(10):929-35.JW
Postpartum depression (PPD) is a disorder with broad public health implications and consequences that impact almost every aspect of child development.
In this pilot study, study participants were 96 women who brought their babies to the University of Arizona Pediatrics Clinic for their 8-week well-baby visit. Participants completed a packet that consisted of questions about demographics, potential correlates of PPD, and the Edinburgh Postpartum Depression Scale (EPDS). English and Spanish versions were available.
Of a total of 172 women who brought their babies in for their 8-week well-baby visit, 96 women completed the packets, for an overall response rate of 56.9%. Observed EPDS scores ranged from 0 to 18, with a mean of 5.44 and a standard deviation (SD) of 4.83. Using the cutoff of EPDS > or = 12, 14.6% of participants were likely suffering from clinically significant depression. Higher EPDS scores and also categorical depression classification were statistically associated with reported smoking and a family history of mental health problems.
We conclude that screening for mothers at well-baby visits is feasible and that the data collected are of sufficient quality to identify reliable predictors even with small sample sizes.