The relationship between thyroid dysfunction and postpartum depression has been investigated for quite some time now, but no consensus has been reached regarding the need for screening for thyroid function during pregnancy. This paper aims to investigate whether thyroid hormone screening in pregnancy might contribute to the diagnosis of postpartum depression.
Depression was assessed using the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) - one of the most widely used measures in detecting postpartum depression and anxiety. Thyroid function was measured using the commonly recommended thyroid laboratory tests.
A structured questionnaire was given to 61 patients closely monitored during their pregnancy and at least one year after giving birth, including for thyroid and depression disorders. The questionnaire was completed anonymously online by the patients and had three sections: one containing the EPDS questions, one assessing thyroid function, and a demographic section.
The interdependency between thyroid and depression was analyzed in SPSS using the Pearson chi-square test of independence. The results show no statistically significant relationship between thyroid dysfunction and depression. In other words, women suffering from thyroid dysfunctions have no greater rate of depression compared to women without thyroid dysfunction. As a result, it screening for thyroid disorders during pregnancy may not provide relevant information for detecting postnatal depression.
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Simionescu, Anca A. and Marin, Erika
"Postpartum depression and thyroid dysfunction– should pregnant women be screened for thyroid disorders?,"
Journal of Mind and Medical Sciences: Vol. 6:
1, Article 17.
Available at: https://scholar.valpo.edu/jmms/vol6/iss1/17