A prospective cohort study of depression in pregnancy, prevalence and risk factors in a multi-ethnic population


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BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth;15(5)


BioMed Central

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Background: Depression in pregnancy increases the risk of complications for mother and child. Few studies are done in ethnic minorities. We wanted to identify the prevalence of depression in pregnancy and associations with ethnicity and other risk factors. Method: Population-based, prospective cohort of 749 pregnant women (59% ethnic minorities) attending primary antenatal care during early pregnancy in Oslo between 2008 and 2010. Questionnaires covering demographics, health problems and psychosocial factors were collected through interviews. Depression in pregnancy was defined as a sum score ≥ 10 by the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) at gestational week 28. Results: The crude prevalence of depression was; Western Europeans: 8.6% (95% CI: 5.45-11.75), Middle Easterners: 19.5% (12.19-26.81), South Asians: 17.5% (12.08-22.92), and other groups: 11.3% (6.09-16.51). Median EPDS score was 6 in Middle Easterners and 3 in all other groups. Middle Easterners (OR = 2.81; 95% CI (1.29-6.15)) and South Asians (2.72 (1.35-5.48)) had significantly higher risk for depression than other minorities and Western Europeans in logistic regression models. When adjusting for socioeconomic position and family structure, the ORs were reduced by 16-18% (OR = 2.44 (1.07-5.57) and 2.25 (1.07-4.72). Other significant risk factors were the number of recent adverse life events, self-reported history of depression and poor subjective health three months before conception. Conclusion: The prevalence of depression in pregnancy was higher in ethnic minorities from the Middle East and South Asia. The increased risk persisted after adjustment for risk factors



© Shakeel et al.; licensee BioMed Central. 2015 This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://​creativecommons.​org/​licenses/​by/​4.​0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly credited. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver (http://​creativecommons.​org/​publicdomain/​zero/​1.​0/​) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

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  • http://hdl.handle.net/10642/2906