Every week we review the most recent publications in women’s mental health, covering topics related to premenstrual symptoms, perinatal mood and anxiety disorders, use of medications in pregnant and breastfeeding women, perinatal substance use, and menopausal mental health.

For more detailed descriptions of many of these topics, you can sign up to receive our weekly CWMH NEWSLETTER which comes out every Thursday.

Ruta Nonacs, MD PhD



No articles this week


Should we stress about stress? Implications of infertility on pregnancy-related anxiety and depression – PubMed

Anxiety and depression symptoms during pregnancy and postpartum among parous women with history of infertility.

In a pregnant cohort, history of infertility was not associated with pregnancy anxiety (adjusted OR 1.03, 95% CI 0.69,1.53), mid-pregnancy depression (aOR 0.93, 95% CI 0.57,1.51), or postpartum depression (aOR 1.01, 95% CI 0.60,1.60).

Spontaneous miscarriage and social support in predicting risks of depression and anxiety: a cohort study in UK Biobank – PubMed

For participants with 1, 2, and ?3 spontaneous miscarriages, hazard ratios (95% confidence intervals) for depression were 1.10 (1.02-1.19), 1.31 (1.14-1.50), and 1.40 (1.18-1.67), respectively, compared with participants without a history of spontaneous miscarriage, after adjustment for covariates. For anxiety, the hazard ratios (95% confidence intervals) were 1.07 (1.00-1.15), 1.04 (0.90-1.19), and 1.21 (1.02-1.44), respectively. The risk of depression is further increased when there is also low degree of social support.


Mid-pregnancy sleep disorders and perinatal depression – PubMed

The predictive effect of mid-pregnancy sleep disorders on perinatal depression within women with or without depression in early pregnancy: A prospective cohort study.

Among women without depression at 12 weeks pregnancy, those with sleep disorders in mid-pregnancy were more likely to have subsequent perinatal depression and depression tended to appear earlier; whereas, among women with depression, mid-pregnancy sleep disorders was not a predictor of subsequent perinatal depression.

The Effects of a Mindfulness-Based Intervention on Mental Health Outcomes in Pregnant Woman: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis – PubMed

Thirteen studies (10 randomized controlled trials and three quasi-experimental studies) were included. MBI was found to have a small effect on mental health outcomes in pregnant women. Specifically, MBI had moderate effects on stress and anxiety but no significant effect on depression.

Rapid increase seen in the diagnosis and treatment of perinatal mental health problems


Risk of Autism after Prenatal Topiramate, Valproate, or Lamotrigine Exposure.

Hernández-Díaz S, et al found that in children born to mothers with epilepsy, the incidence of ASD was 4.2% with no exposure to antiseizure medication (8815 children), 6.2% with exposure to topiramate (1030 children), 10.5% with exposure to valproate (800 children), and 4.1% with exposure to lamotrigine (4205 children).

Antidepressants use during pregnancy and child psychomotor, cognitive and language development at 2 years of age-Results from the 3D Cohort Study – PubMed

1,489 mother-child dyads were included, of whom 61 (4.1%) reported prenatal antidepressant use. Prenatal exposure was negatively associated with motor development, but not with cognitive and language development. Adjusting for maternal prenatal distress only slightly modified these associations.


A dynamic perspective on depressive symptoms during the first year postpartum – PubMed

Efficacy and safety of perioperative application of esketamine on postpartum depression: A meta-analysis of randomized controlled studies – PubMed

The use of esketamine during the perioperative period can reduce the incidence of PPD without increasing adverse effects.

A New $16,000 Postpartum Depression Drug Is Here. How Will Insurers Handle It?

New Research Highlights Inequities in Diagnosis, Treatment of Postpartum Depressive Symptoms


No articles this week


No articles this week


Maternal major depression during early pregnancy is associated with impaired child executive functioning at 4.5 years of age – PubMed

Exposure to maternal major depression during pregnancy, but not milder forms of depression, at 12 to 16 weeks of gestation is associated with impaired executive functioning in children during the preschool years.

Longitudinal associations between paternal mental health and child behavior and cognition in middle childhood – PubMed

In contrast to their hypotheses, this study found that greater prenatal paternal depressive symptoms predicted fewer child behavioral difficulties; and that greater concurrent childhood paternal depression or anxiety symptoms were associated with higher child full-scale IQ, controlling for the equivalent maternal mental health assessment and parental education.

Prenatal maternal cortisol, stress and anxiety, and childhood obesity at 5 years: a nested case-control study – PubMed

These findings do not provide support for associations between fetal exposure during the second trimester of pregnancy and maternal cortisol, stress and anxiety, and childhood overweight or obesity at 5 years of age.

Maternal Mental Health in Pregnancy and Its Impact on Children’s Cognitive Development at 18 Months, during the COVID-19 Pandemic (CONCEPTION Study) – PubMed

During the COVID-19 pandemic, maternal mental health appears to be associated with some aspects of children’s cognitive development.


Optimism may help women maintain physical functioning as they age


With Hope and Fear, Women Turn to Weight-Loss Drugs Before Pregnancy

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