Some of the causes might include personal history of depression, stressful life events, and lack of social, financial or emotional support. Left untreated, it can have lasting negative effects not only on the mother but on her child's development.
In the first study of its kind, investigators at Harvard Medical School and the University of Minnesota School of Public Health report that low-income women with diabetes have a more than 50% increased risk of experiencing this serious illness.
"While previous studies have linked diabetes and depression in the general population, this is the first time, to our knowledge, that the relationship has been studied specifically in pregnant women and new mothers," says Katy Backes Kozhimannil, research fellow in the Department of Ambulatory Care and Prevention at Harvard Medical School and Harvard Pilgrim Health Care. "We believe these findings may help clinicians better identify and treat depression in new mothers."
These findings are published in the February 25 edition of JAMA, the Journal of the American Medical Association.
For over 25 years, clinicians have been aware that new mothers are at risk for postpartum depression. However, the condition is difficult to identify. Many symptoms are attributed to the every-day struggles of being a new mother. Others, such as irrational thoughts about harming the baby or, conversely, obsessing over the baby's health, are simply difficult for new mothers to admit.
To investigate the potential link between diabetes and postpartum depression, Kozhimannil and Bernard Harlow, professor in the University of Minnesota's School of Public Health, examined medical claims data from the New Jersey Medicaid program, looking at information from 11,024 new mothers who had given birth between July 2004 and September 2006. All women in the study were eligible for Medicaid 6 months prior to and one year after delivery and had incomes less than 115% of the federal poverty line ($24,000 for a family of four in 2006).
The researchers identified a woman as having depression if her records indicated a diagnosis, or if she had filled a prescription for an antidepressant medication during the study period. (Diabetes was also identified using both diagnosis and prescription information.)
Study data indicated that 9.6 percent of women with diabetes, who had no indication of depression during pregnancy, developed depression during the year following delivery, compared with 5.9 percent of women without diabetes. Put another way, pregnant women and new mothers with diabetes were approximately 55 to 60 percent more likely to experience postpartum depression. The increased risk of postpartam depression is similar for women who already had diabetes and those who developed it during pregnancy.
The researchers caution that these findings do not establish that diabetes causes postpartum depression, only that the two are related. Also, the medical claims data they used did not contain information on personal or family history of depression, weight or body mass index. Plus, it isn't yet clear the extent to which one can generalize findings from such a specific and localized population.
Still, according to Kozhimannil, "Health care facilities and clinicians that serve low-income and Medicaid populations may want to pay particular attention to managing the mental health concerns of women with diabetes during pregnancy and the postpartum period."
David Cameron | EurekAlert!
Norovirus evades immune system by hiding out in rare gut cells
12.10.2017 | University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine
Flexible sensors can detect movement in GI tract
11.10.2017 | Massachusetts Institute of Technology
University of Maryland researchers contribute to historic detection of gravitational waves and light created by event
On August 17, 2017, at 12:41:04 UTC, scientists made the first direct observation of a merger between two neutron stars--the dense, collapsed cores that remain...
Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.
Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....
Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).
When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...
Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.
How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...
Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, using high precision laser spectroscopy of atomic hydrogen, confirm the surprisingly small value of the proton radius determined from muonic hydrogen.
It was one of the breakthroughs of the year 2010: Laser spectroscopy of muonic hydrogen resulted in a value for the proton charge radius that was significantly...
17.10.2017 | Event News
10.10.2017 | Event News
10.10.2017 | Event News
17.10.2017 | Life Sciences
17.10.2017 | Life Sciences
17.10.2017 | Earth Sciences