Vol 91, No 1 (2020)
Research paper
Published online: 2020-01-31

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Antenatal depression and anxiety in primiparous Polish mothers and fathers

Eliza Kiepura1, Grazyna Kmita1
Pubmed: 32039464
Ginekol Pol 2020;91(1):24-28.


Objectives: Mood disturbances are the most prevalent mental health problems in expectant parents. The knowledge about
the factors which increase the risk of perinatal depression is insufficient, especially in fathers. The aims of the present study
were to estimate the prevalence and to compare mean levels of antenatal depression and anxiety as well as to examine
the relationship between the risk for depression and anxiety in primiparous Polish parents.
Material and methods: 250 parental couples participating in antenatal classes took part in the study. Depression and
anxiety were measured with the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) and the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI),
respectively. Paired t-test with bootstrapping was applied to compare parental EPDS, as well as STAI raw scores. Pearson
correlation coefficients were calculated for depression and anxiety scores for women and men separately. The factors
predictive for the increased risk of depression were investigated with the use of a multivariate logistic regression analysis.
Results: 10% of women and 4% of men were at risk of depression. High level of state anxiety was found in 7.7% of expectant
mothers and 10% of fathers, whereas elevated state anxiety was found in 19% of both parents. EPDS scores correlated
moderately with anxiety. The risk of depression was increased by state anxiety in the case of mothers and by trait anxiety
in the case of fathers.
Conclusions: High level of anxiety increases the risk of antenatal depression. Both parents should be screened for depression
and anxiety in the prenatal period.

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