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


No articles this week


Optimizing Mental Health for Women: Recognizing and Treating Mood Disorders Throughout the Lifespan.

Abel KM, Freeman MP. J Clin Psychiatry. 2023 Sep 18;84(5):vtsmdd2136ahc.

Association between adverse childhood experiences and perinatal depressive symptoms: a cross-sectional analysis of 16,831 women in Iceland.

Bränn E, Vaina A, Daníelsdóttir HB, Thordardottir EB, Yang Q, Jakobsdóttir J, Aspelund T, Hauksdóttir A, Valdimarsdóttir UA, Lu D. Arch Womens Ment Health. 2023 Sep 20.

Total number of ACEs was positively associated with PPD (PR 1.11 per ACE, 95% CI: 1.10-1.11), also among women without any psychiatric comorbidities (PR 1.13, 95% CI: 1.11-1.14). PRs increased in a dose-response manner with the number of ACEs; women that endorsed 5 or more ACEs were twice as likely to have experienced PPD (PR 2.24, 95% CI: 2.09-2.41). All ACE types were associated with PND, with the most pronounced association for emotional neglect by a guardian (PR 1.53, 95% CI: 1.47-1.59).

Can EPDS and EPDS-3A be used to replace GAD-7 to screen the anxiety of pregnant women during pregnancy examination? Pan Y, Xu J. Int J Gynaecol Obstet. 2023 Aug 10.

The EPDS and EPDS-3A can be used alone or in combination for initially screening of pregnancy anxiety. Under certain conditions, they can even be used to replace GAD-7 for anxiety screening to reduce the adverse influence of excessive screening on pregnant women, and improve the quality of survey data and efficiency of clinical services.


No articles this week


Antenatal depression across trimesters as a risk for postpartum depression and estimation of the fraction of postpartum depression attributable to antenatal depression: A systematic review and meta-analysis of cohort studies.

Dlamini LP, Amelia VL, Shongwe MC, Chang PC, Chung MH. Gen Hosp Psychiatry. 2023 Sep 17;85:35-42.

Eighty-eight (88) cohort studies with a combined sample size of 1,042,448 perinatal women contributed to the meta-analysis. About 37% of pregnant women who had antenatal depression (AD) later had PPD. Those with AD had four times higher odds of developing PPD (OR: 4.58; 95% CI = 3.52-5.96). The odds of having PPD were higher when AD was observed in the first or third trimester compared to the second trimester. About 12.8% of PPD cases were attributable to AD.

Randomized pilot trial of the “Mom Power” trauma- and attachment-informed multi-family group intervention in treating and preventing postpartum symptoms of depression among a health disparity sample.

Jester JM, Riggs JL, Menke RA, Alfafara E, Issa M, Muzik M, Rosenblum KL. Front Psychiatry. 2023 Sep 5;14:1048511.

At 3-months post-treatment, the 31 women assigned to Mom Power were half as likely to meet criteria for probable depression (26%) as the 22 women in the control group (55%), with treatment predicting lower incidence of probable depression (OR = 0.13, p = 0.015).

Potential CSF biomarkers of postpartum depression following delivery via caesarian section.

Sheng Z, Liu Q, Lin R, Zhao Y, Liu W, Xu Z, Liu Z. J Affect Disord. 2023 Dec 1;342:177-181.

In samples of CSF collected at delivery, levels of capric acid, dodecanoic acid, arachidic acid and behenic acid in CSF were negatively correlated with PPD symptoms, meanwhile L-tryptophan had a positive correlation. Moreover, these five biomarkers can be used as effective predictive biomarkers for PPD.

Racial Disparities in Diagnosis of Postpartum Mood and Anxiety Disorders Among Symptomatic Medicaid Enrollees, 2012-2015.

Hall SV, Zivin K, Piatt GA, Weaver A, Tilea A, Zhang X, Moyer CA. Psychiatr Serv. 2023 Sep 27:

Rate of PMAD diagnosis receipt differed by race and was low overall. Black respondents were less likely than White respondents to receive a diagnosis. Patient characteristics influencing diagnosis receipt also differed by race, indicating that strategies to improve detection of these disorders require a tailored approach.

Screening fathers for postpartum depression in a maternal-child health clinic: a program evaluation in a midwest urban academic medical center.

Wainwright S, Caskey R, Rodriguez A, Holicky A, Wagner-Schuman M, Glassgow AE. BMC Pregnancy Childbirth. 2023 Sep 19;23(1):675.

Participation was high in a PPD screening pilot for fathers in a primary care setting.

Fidelity Assessment of Peer-Delivered Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy for Postpartum Depression.

Babiy Z, Merza D, Layton H, Bieling PJ, Van Lieshout RJ. Am J Psychother. 2023 Aug 23:appipsychotherapy20220060.

Trained peers may be able to reliably rate the fidelity of a PAI for postpartum depression. This preliminary study represents the first step toward peer-led feedback as an alternative to expert-led supervision of peer-delivered group CBT for postpartum depression.

Effects of perioperative use of esketamine on postpartum depression risk in patients undergoing cesarean section: A randomized controlled trial.

Liu QR, Zong QK, Ding LL, Dai HY, Sun Y, Dong YY, Ren ZY, Hashimoto K, Yang JJ. J Affect Disord. 2023 Oct 15;339:815-822.

Perioperative administration of esketamine did not decrease the incidence of PPD risk in women after elective cesarean section. However, esketamine reduced the use of opioid for pain relief.

One size doesn’t fit all: Attitudes towards work modify the relation between parental leave length and postpartum depression.

Chang CY, Liu SR, Glynn LM. Arch Womens Ment Health. 2023 Sep 22.

Longer leaves were associated with increased depressive symptoms for women who missed their previous activities at work. Furthermore, women who missed work and had leave for 16 weeks or more, exhibited higher depressive symptoms at six- and twelve-months. Last, results also indicated that women who returned to work solely for monetary reasons exhibited more depressive symptoms at six-months postpartum than those who returned to work for other reasons.


No articles this week


No articles this week


Maternal childhood maltreatment: associations to offspring brain volume and white matter connectivity.

Lugo-Candelas C, Chang L, Dworkin JD, Aw N, Fields A, Reed H, Spann M, Gilchrist MA, Hinds W, Marsh R, Fifer WP, Weissman M, Foerster BU, Manin MG, Silva I, Peterson B, Coelho Milani AC, Gingrich J, Monk C, Duarte CS, Jackowski A, Posner J. J Dev Orig Health Dis. 2023 Sep 21:1-11.

In male children, history of maternal maltreatment could have intergenerational associations to offspring brain development visualized with MRI that may ultimately result in changes in behavior and later vulnerability to psychiatric illness.

Relationship Between Parental Postnatal Distress and 5-Year Mental Health Outcomes of Children Born at <30 Weeks and at Term.

Yates R, Treyvaud K, Lee KJ, Doyle LW, Cheong JLY, Pace CC, Spittle AJ, Spencer-Smith M, Anderson PJ. J Dev Behav Pediatr. 2023 Sep 1;44(7):e455-e462.

Children born <30 weeks’ gestation showed more mental health symptoms than their term-born peers at age 5 years. Maternal postnatal distress was associated with poorer child mental health across both groups, reinforcing the need for early identification and support of mental health distress in the postpartum period to improve longer-term child well-being.

The association between prenatal psychosocial factors and autism spectrum disorder in offspring at 3 years: a prospective cohort study.

Seebeck J, Sznajder KK, Kjerulff KH. Soc Psychiatry Psychiatr Epidemiol. 2023 Aug 9.

These findings suggest that maternal experience of adverse psychosocial factors during pregnancy may be important intrauterine exposures related to the pathogenesis of ASD.

The effect of prenatal stress on offspring depression susceptibility in relation to the gut microbiome and metabolome.

Li Q, Sun H, Guo J, Zhao X, Bai R, Zhang M, Liu M. J Affect Disord. 2023 Oct 15;339:531-537.

Animal study looks at the gut microbiome as a moderator of prenatal maternal distress on behavior in the offspring.


No articles this week


No articles this week

Related Posts