Post-traumatic stress disorder following childbirth

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Background: Childbirth experience could be complicated and even traumatic. This study explored the possible risk factors for post-traumatic stress disorder following childbirth (PTSD-FC) in mothers and partners. Methods: Through a cross-sectional online survey biographical, medical, psychological, obstetrical and trauma history data were collected. The PTSD-FC, postnatal depression, social support, and perceived mother-infant bond in 916 mothers and 64 partners were measured through self-reported psychometric assessments. Results: Our findings highlight the possible impact of several risk factors such as emergency childbirth, past traumatic experiences and distressing events during childbirth on PTSD-FC. The difficulties in mother-infant bond and the postpartum depression were highly associated with the total score of PTSD-FC symptoms for mothers. While for partners, post-partum depression was highly associated with the total score of PTSD-FC. Conclusions: Our study demonstrated significant links between psychological, traumatic and birth-related risk factors as well as the perceived social support and the possible PTSD following childbirth in mothers and partners. Given that, a specific attention to PTSD-FC and psychological distress following childbirth should be given to mothers and their partners following childbirth.




Ertan, D., Hingray, C., Burlacu, E., Sterlé, A., & El-Hage, W. (2021). Post-traumatic stress disorder following childbirth. BMC Psychiatry, 21(1).

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