Systematic Review of Prevalence of Antepartum Depression during the Trimesters of Pregnancy
BACKGROUND: Depression is prevalent during antenatal and postnatal stages of pregnancy. The effect of depression can be seen in complications during and after pregnancy, fetal growth retardation, abortions and preterm births. The literature abounds on postpartum depression (PD) while few studies are on antepartum depression (AD).
AIM: The systematic review aims to compute the prevalence of AD from published articles.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: The published articles (26) used in this review were obtained from the search of the search keywords â€œDepressive conditions in pregnancy AND trimestersâ€. All the articles were considered irrespective of language and their citation status as of the time of the query. Only articles that presented the prevalence mean and sample size were included. Articles on questionnaires filled by nonpregnant women and men were excluded. Articles that presented the prevalence of depression for the postpartum period only were excluded but were included if they addressed depression at both postpartum and trimester(s) of pregnancy. P-value of less than or equal to 0.05 was considered significant.
RESULTS: Analysis of the 26 articles showed that 4,303 subjects tested positive for depression in a sample of 28,248 pregnant mothers, giving the prevalence rate as 15%. Confounding was removed, and the sample size was adjusted to be 25,771 and 4,223 were screened to have depressive symptoms, thereby giving a new prevalence rate as 16.4%. It was also revealed that AD is most prevalent in the last trimester of pregnancy and least in the second trimester. Pregnancy duration and PD are not correlated with AD. This implies that AD can be observed in any period of the pregnancy and cannot predict the incidence of PD.
CONCLUSION: Efforts must be intensified to monitor pregnant women during the third trimester to reduce the incidence of maternal depression during pregnancy, thereby reducing the prevalence.
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