Mass General Hospital

Harvard Medical School



Higher Prepregnancy BMI Linked to Higher Rates of Maternal Morbidity

  In the United States, about half of all pregnant women are overweight or obese. A recent study indicates that higher prepregnancy body mass index (BMI) is associated with a higher risk of maternal morbidity.  In this study carried out in Washington State, 743,630 women were included. Prepregnancy BMI was distributed as follows: underweight, 3.2%; […]

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Weekly Roundup for November 24, 2017: Recent Publications in Women’s Mental Health

  This week there are some very interesting articles looking at the effects of negative childhood experiences on risk for postpartum depression and impaired mother-infant bonding.  In a large population-based study, Meltzer-Brody and colleagues reported that adverse life events experienced during childhood, primarily the result of to parental psychopathology, are at increased risk of postpartum […]

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Depression in Fathers Increases Risk for Adolescent Depression

According to a study published last year in the journal Pediatrics, adolescent depression is on the rise. In adolescents, the 12-month prevalence of major depression increased from 8.7% in 2005 to 11.3% in 2014.  Other studies have noted an increase in rates of suicide among adolescents, particularly girls; among girls aged 10-14, the suicide rate […]

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Weekly Roundup for November 17, 2017: Recent Publications in Women’s Mental Health

The article that received the most attention this week is one examining the risks associated with the use of stimulants to treat ADHD during pregnancy (Cohen JM et al, 2017).  There were no real surprises here, but the study suffers from many of the same shortcomings as other studies investigating the effects of other psychotropic […]

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Autism Spectrum Disorders and Maternal Nutrition

Current research suggests that autism spectrum disorders (ASD) occur as a result of events that take place during pregnancy.  While genetic factors play an important role, non-heritable risk factors contribute to a substantial proportion of ASD cases.  Maternal nutrition has been a focus of interest as a factor which may influence risk for ASD. However, […]

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Weekly Roundup for November 3, 2017: Recent Publications in Women’s Mental Health

The comorbidity of Axis I disorders in depressed pregnant women. Dindo L, Elmore A, O’Hara M, Stuart S.  Arch Womens Ment Health. 2017 Aug 25. Researchers observed high rates of anxiety disorders among women both with and without current major depression, although depressed women reported higher rates of generalized anxiety disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder. […]

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New Research from the CWMH: Risk of Gestational Diabetes in Women Taking Second Generation Antipsychotics During Pregnancy

The use of the newer “atypical” or second-generation antipsychotic (SGA) 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 […]

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Weekly Roundup for October 27, 2017: Recent Publications in Women’s Mental Health

This week, we have two studies from the Center for Women’s Mental Health — one looking at risk for gestational diabetes in women treated with second generation antipsychotic medications during pregnancy and the other on the use of vortioxetine in perimenopausal women.   Ruta Nonacs, MD PhD Gestational Weight Gain and Pre-pregnancy Body Mass Index […]

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Examining the Association Between Anxiety Disorders and their Treatment in Pregnancy Outcomes

While numerous published studies have investigated the impact of treatments for major depressive disorder (MDD) in pregnancy on maternal and neonatal outcomes, few studies have examined the perinatal effects of anxiety disorders such as generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) and panic disorder (PD). Despite the comorbidity of the two types of psychiatric disorders in women of […]

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Father’s Involvement and Early Infant Neurodevelopment: The Mediating Role of Maternal Parenting Stress

It is fairly well-known that interactions between parents and children are associated with improved developmental outcomes in children.  Previous research has primarily focused on how maternal rather than paternal involvement influences infant neurodevelopment.  A recent study examines the direct and indirect relationships between paternal involvement and infant neurodevelopment, and how maternal parenting stress mediates this […]

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