THURSDAY, May 19 (HealthDay News) -- Hispanic women who suffer
domestic abuse during or shortly before becoming pregnant have a
fivefold increased risk of postpartum depression, U.S. researchers
The findings suggest that intimate partner violence is a
stronger predictor of postpartum depression than prenatal
depression, which is generally regarded as the most significant
The study of 210 Hispanic women aged 18 and older in Los Angeles
found that women who experienced domestic violence during pregnancy
or within the 12 months prior to pregnancy were 5.4 times more
likely to suffer postpartum depression than those who hadn't
suffered recent abuse.
The researchers also found that women who experienced prenatal
depression were 3.5 times more likely to have postpartum depression
than those who didn't experience prenatal depression.
These findings indicate that pregnant women should be screened
for both prenatal depression and intimate partner violence, said
the researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles Center
for Culture, Trauma and Mental Health Disparities.
The study appears in the current issue of the
Archives of Women's Mental Health.
The Nemours Foundation has more about