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BACKGROUND: Post partum depression (PPD) is relatively common in China but its clinical characteristics and risk factors have not been studied. We set out to investigate whether known risk factors for PPD could be found in Chinese women. METHODS: A case control design was used to determine the impact of known risk factors for PPD in a cohort of 1970 Chinese women with recurrent DSM-IV major depressive disorder (MDD). In a within-case design we examined the risk factors for PPD in patients with recurrent MDD. We compared the clinical features of MDD in cases with PPD to those without MDD. Odds ratios were calculated using logistic and ordinal regression. RESULTS: Lower occupational and educational statuses increased the risk of PPD, as did a history of pre-menstrual symptoms, stressful life events and elevated levels of the personality trait of neuroticism. Patients with PPD and MDD were more likely to experience a comorbid anxiety disorder, had a younger age of onset of MDD, have higher levels of neuroticism and dysthymia. LIMITATIONS: Results obtained in this clinical sample may not be applicable to PPD within the community. Data were obtained retrospectively and we do not know whether the correlations we observe have the same causes as those operating in other populations. CONCLUSIONS: Our results are consistent with the hypothesis that the despite cultural differences between Chinese and Western women, the phenomenology and risk factors for PPD are very similar.

Original publication

DOI

10.1016/j.jad.2011.06.047

Type

Journal article

Journal

J Affect Disord

Publication Date

02/2012

Volume

136

Pages

983 - 987

Keywords

Adult, Case-Control Studies, China, Cohort Studies, Comorbidity, Depression, Postpartum, Depressive Disorder, Major, Female, Humans, Male, Middle Aged, Recurrence, Retrospective Studies, Risk Factors