Author(s): Patel V, DeSouza N, Rodrigues M
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Abstract BACKGROUND: Postnatal depression is a recognised cause of delayed cognitive development in infants in developed countries. Being underweight is common in South Asia. AIMS: To determine whether postnatal depression contributes to poor growth and development outcomes in Goa, India. METHODS: Cohort study for growth outcomes with nested case-control study for developmental outcomes. A total of 171 babies were weighed and measured at 6-8 weeks following birth. The following measures were used: Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale for maternal mood, and sociodemographic and infant health variables. Outcome measures were: weight (<5th centile), length (<5th centile), and Developmental Assessment Scale for Indian Infants scores at six months. RESULTS: Postnatal depression was a strong, and independent, predictor of low weight and length and was significantly associated with adverse mental development quotient scores. CONCLUSIONS: This study provides evidence for the first time that postnatal depression, a potentially treatable disorder, is a cause of poor growth and development in South Asia.
This article was published in Arch Dis Child
and referenced in Journal of Depression and Anxiety