Diagnosing postpartum depression in mothers and fathers : Whatever happened to anxiety?

Matthey, Stephen, Barnett, Bryanne, Howie, Pauline, & Kavanagh, David J. (2003) Diagnosing postpartum depression in mothers and fathers : Whatever happened to anxiety? Journal of Affective Disorders, 74(2), pp. 139-147.

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Although anxiety disorders are documented in the literature for new mothers (but less so for fathers), rates of postpartum caseness tend to include only those with depression when diagnostic interviews or self-report measures validated on such interviews are used. This methodology therefore underestimates the true percentage of women and men who experience significant psychological difficulties postpartum. This has implications for assessment, treatment and screening for postnatal mood disorders. Two studies were conducted on a total of 408 women and 356 men expecting their first child. They were recruited antenatally, and interviewed at 6 weeks postpartum using the Diagnostic Interview Schedule. DSM-IV criteria were applied to determine the presence since birth of depression (major or minor), panic disorder, acute adjustment disorder with anxiety (meeting the criteria for generalised anxiety disorder except for the duration criterion), and phobia. The inclusion of diagnostic assessment for panic disorder and acute adjustment disorder with anxiety increased the rates of caseness by between 57 and 100% for mothers, and 31-130% for fathers, over the rates for major or minor depression. Inclusion of assessment for phobia further increased the rates of disorder in both samples.

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ID Code: 29172
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Postpartum depression, Diagnosis, Mothers, Fathers, Anxiety, Anxiety disorders
DOI: 10.1016/S0165-0327(02)00012-5
ISSN: 0165-0327
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > PUBLIC HEALTH AND HEALTH SERVICES (111700) > Mental Health (111714)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Psychology & Counselling
Deposited On: 08 Dec 2009 23:21
Last Modified: 29 Feb 2012 14:10

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