Mass General Hospital

Harvard Medical School



Depression Trajectories Across the Peripartum Period: Many Women Depressed During the First Postpartum Year

In the earliest studies, postpartum depression was described an episode of depression associated with childbirth, typically emerging within the first three months after delivery.  As more research has been carried out, we have learned that a sizeable number of  women with PPD actually begin to experience symptoms during pregnancy.  The bottom line is that women […]

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Weekly Roundup for SEP 23 2016

This week’s roundup includes a series of articles on depression in menopausal women. Reducing depression during the menopausal transition with health coaching: Results from the healthy menopausal transition randomised controlled trial. Almeida OP, Marsh K, Murray K, Hickey M, Sim M, Ford A, Flicker L. Maturitas. 2016 Oct;92:41-8. doi: 10.1016/j.maturitas.2016.07.012. Epub 2016 Jul 19. Depressive […]

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Postpartum Depression: Focus on Managing Comorbid Anxiety Symptoms

  Multiple studies have demonstrated the effectiveness of antidepressant medications for the treatment of postpartum depression (PPD).  Most of the these studies focused on the impact of these medications on depressive symptoms; however, it is clear that many, or maybe most, women with PPD also have significant anxiety symptoms.  Thus, we can hypothesize that medications […]

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Weekly Roundup for SEP 17 2016: Recent Publications in Women’s Mental Health

  Heading the list are two important reviews: one on postpartum psychosis from the American Journal of Psychiatry and another on the topic of perinatal suicide.  On the list, you will also find several interesting articles on the association between infertility treatment and postpartum depression (Tendais andFigueiredo, Gressier et al). Postpartum Psychosis: Madness, Mania, and […]

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Credit: Depressed Mother from Wikimedia Commons

Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale for Postpartum Depression: Three Items Better Than Ten

The Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) is the screening instrument most commonly used to identify women with postpartum mood disorders.  This is a 10-item questionnaire which has been validated in many different populations and is available in almost every language. On this scale, a score of 10 or greater or an affirmative answer on question […]

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Taking a Look at the New FDA Pregnancy Labeling and Lactation Rule

  The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has proposed major revisions to prescription drug labeling in order to provide more accurate and helpful information on the effects of medications used during pregnancy and breastfeeding. The system used by the FDA for the last 30 years classifies the reproductive safety of medications using five risk […]

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Weekly Roundup for SEP 9 2016: Recent Publications in Women’s Mental Health

Lately we are seeing more articles about postpartum anxiety.  Although we typically emphasize postpartum depression, many women experience clinically significant symptoms of anxiety during pregnancy and the postpartum period.  This week we have one article from Goodman and colleagues focusing on postpartum anxiety and another from Biaggi et al which discusses anxiety during pregnancy. Anxiety […]

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photo credit: Alarm via photopin (license)

In Brief: CBT for Menopausal Sleep Problems Produces Lasting Effects

  Peri- and postmenopausal women frequently complain of insomnia or poor sleep quality. Sleep disturbance is often attributed to nocturnal hot flashes; however, many menopausal women may have a primary sleep disorder, such as sleep apnea or restless leg syndrome. Various pharmacologic and nonpharmacologic options are available for the treatment of menopause-related insomnia.   The findings […]

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Weekly Roundup for AUG 26 2016: Recent Publications in Women’s Mental Health

  In this week’s roundup, there are several interesting reviews.  The first is from van der Zee-van den Berg AI (and colleagues with equally long names) on screening for postpartum depression at well-baby visits.  From our group, Charlotte Hogan and Marlene Freeman have published a review on the adverse effects of pharmacologic treatment of bipolar […]

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Baby Belly from Wikimedia Commons

New Research from the CWMH: Prenatal Exposure to Atypical Antipsychotics Does Not Increase Risk of Malformations

The use of the newer “atypical” or second-generation antipsychotic agents continues to increase.  These medications are used to treat a spectrum of psychiatric disorders, including schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, major depression, PTSD and anxiety disorders.  Although most of the women taking atypical antipsychotics are of childbearing age, our information on the reproductive safety of these newer […]

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