In first-time mothers, post-partum depressive symptom prospectively predict symptoms of post-traumatic stress Academic Article uri icon


  • Abstract Background Symptoms of both depression and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) are prevalent among first-time mothers following birth. However, the direction of the association between the two types of symptoms is unclear. Methods Ninety six first-time mothers giving birth via vaginal delivery ( N =38), emergency C-Section ( N =27) and planned C-Section ( N =21) were assessed for depression and PTSD twice: Six weeks post-partum and six-weeks later. Results Cross-lagged Structural Equation Modeling (SEM) analyses revealed a prospective effect of depressive symptoms on PTSD symptoms. No moderating factors were identified. Limitations A relatively modest sample size and only two assessment waves. Conclusions An early detection and intervention with symptoms of post-partum depression might also prevent the development of PTSD symptoms.

publication date

  • January 1, 2015