Posttraumatic Stress Disorder in New Mothers: Results from a Two-Stage U.S. National Survey
ABSTRACT Prevalence rates of women in community samples who screened positive for meeting the DSM-IV criteria for posttraumatic stress disorder after childbirth range from 1.7 to 9 percent. A positive screen indicates a high likelihood of this postpartum anxiety disorder. The objective of this analysis was to examine the results that focus on the posttraumatic stress disorder data obtained from a two-stage United States national survey conducted by Childbirth Connection: Listening to Mothers II (LTM II) and Listening to Mothers II Postpartum Survey (LTM II/PP).
In the LTM II study, 1,373 women completed the survey online, and 200 mothers were interviewed by telephone. The same mothers were recontacted and asked to complete a second questionnaire 6 months later and of those, 859 women completed the online survey and 44 a telephone interview. Data obtained from three instruments are reported in this article: Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Symptom Scale-Self Report (PSS-SR), Postpartum Depression Screening Scale (PDSS), and the Patient Health Questionnaire-2 (PHQ-2).
Nine percent of the sample screened positive for meeting the diagnostic criteria of posttraumatic stress disorder after childbirth as determined by responses on the PSS-SR. A total of 18 percent of women scored above the cutoff score on the PSS-SR, which indicated that they were experiencing elevated levels of posttraumatic stress symptoms. The following variables were significantly related to elevated posttraumatic stress symptoms levels: low partner support, elevated postpartum depressive symptoms, more physical problems since birth, and less health-promoting behaviors. In addition, eight variables significantly differentiated women who had elevated posttraumatic stress symptom levels from those who did not: no private health insurance, unplanned pregnancy, pressure to have an induction and epidural analgesia, planned cesarean birth, not breastfeeding as long as wanted, not exclusively breastfeeding at 1 month, and consulting with a clinician about mental well-being since birth. A stepwise multiple regression revealed that two predictor variables significantly explained 55 percent of the variance in posttraumatic stress symptom scores: depressive symptom scores on the PHQ-2 and total number of physical symptoms women were experiencing at the time they completed the LTM II/PP survey.
In this two-stage national survey the high percentage of mothers who screened positive for meeting all the DSM-IV criteria for a posttraumatic stress disorder diagnosis is a sobering statistic.
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ABSTRACT: Background: breast-feeding outcomes are often worse after caesarean section compared to vaginal childbirth. Objectives: this study characterises mothers' breast-feeding intentions and their infant feeding experiences after caesarean childbirth. Methods: data are from 115 mothers on a postnatal unit in Northeast England during February 2006–March 2009. Interviews were conducted an average of 1.5 days (range 1–6 days) after the women underwent unscheduled or scheduled caesarean. Results: thematic analysis of the data suggested was mostly considered the ‘right thing to do,’ preferable, natural, and ‘supposedly healthier,’ but tiring and painful. Advantages of supplementation involved more satiated infants, feeding ease, and longer sleep bouts. The need for ‘thinking about yourself’ was part of caesarean recovery. Infrequent feeding was concerning but also enabled maternal rest. Other breast-feeding obstacles were maternal mobility limitations, positioning difficulties, and frustration at the need for assistance. Participants were confused about nocturnal infant wakings, leading many to determine that they had insufficient milk. Mothers were surprised that sub-clinically poor infant condition was common following caesarean section. Some breast-feeding difficulty stemmed from ‘mucus’ expulsion that had to occur before the infants could be ‘interested’ in feeding. Women who cited motivations for breast feeding that included benefit to themselves were more likely to exclusively breast feed on the postnatal unit after their caesareans than those who reported infant-only motivations. Conclusions: for the majority of mothers, breast feeding after a caesarean is affected by interrelated and compounding difficulties. Provision of more relational breast-feeding information may enable families to better anticipate early feeding experiences after caesarean section childbirth.Midwifery 10/2013; 30(6). DOI:10.1016/j.midw.2013.10.014 · 1.71 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: We investigated the impact of pre-existing mental ill health on postpartum maternal outcomes. Women reporting childbirth trauma received counselling (Promoting Resilience in Mothers' Emotions; n = 137) or parenting support (n = 125) at birth and 6 weeks. The EuroQol Five dimensional (EQ-5D)-measured health-related quality of life at 6 weeks, 6 and 12 months. At 12 months, EQ-5D was better for women without mental health problems receiving PRIME (mean difference (MD) 0.06; 95 % confidence interval (CI) 0.02 to 0.10) or parenting support (MD 0.08; 95 % CI 0.01 to 0.14). Pre-existing mental health conditions influence quality of life in women with childbirth trauma.Archives of Women s Mental Health 10/2013; 16(6). DOI:10.1007/s00737-013-0384-5 · 1.96 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: To analyze the effects of psychosocial interventions with the aim of reducing the intensity of stress in mothers during the postpartum period as compared with usual care. Eligible studies were identified by searching MEDLINE, EMBASE, CINAHL, and ProQuest dissertations and theses. Randomized controlled trials (RCTs) treating stress in postpartum mothers older than age 19 years were included. The suitability of the quality of articles was evaluated using Joanna Briggs Institute's Critical Appraisal Checklist for Experimental Studies. Fourteen articles met the inclusion criteria for data analysis. Authors, country, sample, setting, methods, time period, major content of the intervention, outcome measures, and salient findings were extracted and summarized in a data extraction form for further analysis and synthesis. Standardized mean differences with 95% confidence intervals were calculated for 13 suitable articles using Cochrane Review Manager. Of 1,871 publications, 14 RCTs, conducted between 1994 and 2012, were evaluated in the systematic review and 13 studies were included in the meta-analysis. Studies were categorized into three major types by interventional methods. We found that psychosocial interventions in general (standard mean difference -1.66, 95% confidence interval [-2.74, -0.57], p = .003), and supportive stress management programs in particular (standard mean difference -0.59, 95% confidence interval [-0.94, -0.23], p = .001), were effective for women dealing with postpartum stress. This review indicated that psychosocial interventions including supportive stress management programs are effective for reducing postpartum stress in women, so those interventions should become an essential part of maternity care. © 2015 AWHONN, the Association of Women's Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses.Journal of Obstetric Gynecologic & Neonatal Nursing 02/2015; 44(2). DOI:10.1111/1552-6909.12541 · 1.20 Impact Factor