A Comparison of Postpartum Depression in Mothers Conceived by Assisted Reproductive Technology and Those Naturally Conceived
It is thought that mothers who conceive via assisted reproductive technology (ART) may be at greater risk of postpartum depression (PPD) because of the problems and psychological stresses associated with ART treat- ment. The aim of the present study is to determine the occurrence of PPD among mothers who conceive by ART in comparison with mothers who naturally conceive. The Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) was used to assess PPD.
Materials and Methods
This historical cohort study investigated 406 mothers with infants aged 3-9 months. Three hundred and eight women with natural pregnancies were selected as the control group from mothers who referred to Tehran healthcare centres for infant vaccinations. The ART group consisted of 98 women who conceived via ART at Royan Institute. Participants completed a general questionnaire that asked about education, occupation, number of children, delivery method, history of infant hospitalization, breastfeeding, mothers’ and infants’ ages, cause of infertil- ity (ART group), and history of depression. A validated Persian version of the EPDS was used to measure depressive symptoms.
The mean EPDS score in mothers who naturally conceived was 8.38 ± 0.35 in comparison with mothers who conceived via ART (7.59 ± 0.63). The proportions of women who reported PPD were 26.0% for the control group and 20.4% for the ART group. There was no statistically significant difference in PPD between the control and ART groups (P=0.26).
The occurrence of PPD in mothers who conceived via ART was similar to those who conceived naturally.