Prevalence and Predictors of Postpartum Depression: Northwest Ethiopia

Mengstu Melkamu Asaye, Haymanot Alem Muche, Eyerusalem Desta Zelalem
Psychiatry Journal 2020, 2020: 9565678

Background: Postpartum depression is an umbrella, which encompasses several mood disorders that follow childbirth within 6 weeks. Screening for postpartum depression would improve the ability to recognize these disorders and enhance care that ensures improved clinical outcomes. Early identification of postpartum depression is important in order to plan for implementation strategies that allow for timely treatment and support of women with postpartum depression.

Objective: To determine the prevalence and associated factors of postpartum depression among women who gave birth in the last six weeks in Gondar town, Northwest Ethiopia, 2018.

Methods: A community based cross-sectional study was conducted among 526 women who gave birth in the last 6 weeks from July 1 to 30, 2018 in Gondar town. Cluster sampling technique was used. Data were collected by semi-structured and pretested questionnaire and entered into epi-Info version 7.0 and then analyzed by SPSS version 20.0. Both bivariate and multivariable logistic regression model were fitted. Adjusted odds ratio with 95% confidence interval has been computed and variables with p -value <0.05 were considered statistically significant.

Results: The prevalence of postpartum depression among 526 postnatal women was 25% (95% CI: 21, 28). Abortion history (AOR = 1.79, 95% CI: 1.07, 2.97), birth weight <2.5 kg (AOR = 3.12, 95% CI: 1.78, 5.48), gestational age below 36 weeks (AOR = 2.18, 95% CI: 1.22, 3.88) unplanned pregnancy (AOR = 2.02, 95% CI: 1.24, 3.31), relatives' mental illness (AOR = 1.20: 1.09-3.05), had no antenatal visit (AOR = 4.05, 95% CI: 1.81, 9.05), had no postnatal visit (AOR = 1.82, 95% CI: 1.11, 3.00) were factors significantly associated with postpartum depression. Conclusion and Recommendations. The prevalence of PPD was found to be higher. Variables like abortion history, low birth weight, gestational age below 36 weeks, unplanned pregnancy, relatives' mental illness, had no antenatal visit, and had no postnatal visit were predisposing factors to postpartum depression. Preventive measures to avoid low birth weight and pregnancy complications are also identified as proactive ways to reduce postpartum depression. Early identification and treatment of depression during ANC and postpartum care can mitigate the impact of PPD on the mother-baby dyad. Emphasis must be given women to have ANC and PNC follow up.

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