Introduction: Few studies have reported the role of psychosocial risk factors by a validated scale in predicting mental disorders in women with a complicated pregnancy. This study investigated the role of a psychosocial risk assessment tool in the prediction of postnatal depression in women with a complicated pregnancy.
Methods: A prospective study was performed on pregnant women with complicated pregnancies from December, 2019, to June, 2020. A total of 125 pregnant women filled the Antenatal Risk Questionnaire (ANRQ), Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS), and Brief Symptom Inventory 53 items (BSI-53). Also, the patients completed EPDS for 6 weeks postpartum. An expert mental specialist conducted the interviews based on the DSM-5.
Results: More than half of the women with complicated pregnancies were diagnosed to have at least one mental disorder. The mean risk scores of ANRQ, including the childhood social support from the respondent’s mother, history of mental illness, perceived level of support available postpartum, significant life events in the past 12 months, and personality traits with high anxiety, were higher in women with mental disorders than those without mental disorders. The results emphasized that the total score of ANRQ was the strongest positive predictor for postnatal depression score of EPDS (β = 0.569, p=<0.001), total score of BSI-53 (β = 0.666 p=<0.001), and GSI (β = 0.237, p=0.019).
Conclusion: The study proposes that the use of a validated psychosocial risk assessment tool alongside a psychological screening tool, like EPDS, is reliable for the prediction of mental disorders and help women with complicated pregnancy at risk for the prevention of depression at antenatal visits.
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