• Thu. Mar 23rd, 2023

Is antenatal COVID-19–related pressure connected with postpartum maternal mental overall health and infant outcomes?


Mar 17, 2023

In a current study published in JAMA Network Open, researchers assessed the partnership amongst coronavirus illness 2019 (COVID-19)-connected pressure in the antenatal period and the mental properly-becoming of mothers and their infants in the postpartum period.

Study: Association of Antenatal COVID-19–Related Anxiety With Postpartum Maternal Mental Well being and Adverse Affectivity in Infants. Image Credit: GrooveZ/Shutterstock


Research have reported that antenatal stressors considerably raise the threat of adverse postpartum outcomes relating to mental properly-becoming, such as cognitive and behavioral troubles amongst infants. Situations of anxiousness and depression throughout pregnancy have considerably enhanced throughout the serious acute respiratory coronavirus two (SARS-CoV-two) pandemic, with lowered optimistic affectivity, worsened orienting behavior, and larger surgency amongst infants.

Having said that, the association amongst COVID-19-connected pressure and postpartum maternal and infant outcomes is not fully understood. Prior research evaluating the effects of antenatal stressors on maternal and infantile overall health outcomes had been largely cross-sectional, single-center, retrospective, with smaller sample populations, and usually utilized unvalidated assessment measures with no documentation of psychometric properties.

About the study

In the present longitudinal survey-primarily based study, researchers evaluated the influence of antenatal SARS-CoV-two infection-connected pressure on postpartum maternal and infant mental overall health outcomes.

The study comprised 318 men and women aged ≥11. years who participated in the coronavirus illness 2019 dangers across lifespan (CORAL) study performed in the United Kingdom (UK), United States (US), and Australia. Females who had been expecting at the initial evaluation amongst five Might and 30 September 2020 and completed two adhere to-up evaluations amongst 28 October 2021 and 24 April 2022 at 3-month intervals had been thought of for the evaluation.

In addition, the participants had been invited to fill out a fourth survey on maternal mental properly-becoming and infant temperament in the adhere to-up period. COVID-19-connected pressure levels had been evaluated working with the pandemic anxiousness measurement scale. The group utilized the eight-element patient overall health questionnaire to assess depression amongst mothers and the seven-element basic anxiousness disorder (GAD) scale to assess generalized anxiousness levels.

In the course of adhere to-ups, postpartum distress levels had been evaluated working with the ten.-element postpartum distress assessment measure, and overall health outcomes amongst infants had been assessed working with the Infant Behavior questionnaire. People had been recruited for the study by means of paid marketing, social media, mothers’ group newsletters, mental properly-becoming organizations, and internet-primarily based pregnancy forums.

Linear mixed-effects modeling was performed for the evaluation. Sensitivity analyses had been performed controlling for maternal mental overall health at initial evaluation and COVID-19 dangers skilled throughout pregnancy and the age of the infants throughout adhere to-up assessments. The study participants had been supplied Amazon present vouchers of A$one hundred for the initial survey and A$20 for adhere to-up surveys.


The imply age of the study participants was 32 years, and amongst the study participants, 28% (n=88), 30% (n=94), and 43% (n=136) resided in Australia, the United States, and the United Kingdom, respectively, amongst whom, 87% (n=276) had been White, and 81% (n=256) had university degrees. A history of psychiatric problems was reported by 36% (n=114) of the study participants.

Other races and ethnicities incorporated in the sample population had been Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander, Asian, Hispanic, mixed, or other, amongst two, 12, eight, seven, and ten participants, respectively. Higher college education was attained by 19 girls and qualified or vocational instruction by 41 girls.

At the initial evaluation, the imply values for the quantity of young children and the gestational age (in months) had been 1.20 and five.80, respectively. At the final evaluation, the imply infant age was 14 months. COVID-19-connected pressure in the antenatal period showed substantial associations with distress, anxiousness, and depression amongst mothers and unfavorable affectivity amongst infants in the postpartum period. Sensitivity analyses yielded comparable findings.

At the initial evaluation, 3 girls showed mild GAD and depression (imply scores on the GAD-7 scale and Patient Well being questionnaire of six.70 and 7.80, respectively), and symptoms remained elevated for 17. months postpartum. There had been no interactive associations amongst the age of the infants and antenatal SARS-CoV-two infection-connected pressure with infant overall health outcomes.


All round, the study findings showed that antenatal pandemic-connected stressors should be targeted to strengthen mothers’ and infants’ postpartum outcomes. Expecting girls should be thought of vulnerable and prioritized throughout COVID-19 and other pandemics and supplied acceptable care for physical and mental properly-becoming.

Additional investigation should be performed to identify techniques of lowering pandemic-connected pressure to market maternal and neonatal properly-becoming in the postpartum period. The extended-term relationships amongst SARS-CoV-two infection-connected pressure and maternal and neonatal overall health should be assessed.

Psychological and biological vulnerability markers amongst a a lot more diverse group of pregnant girls belonging to distinctive ethnicities and residing in distinctive geographical regions should be identified to personalize antenatal healthcare.

Written by

Pooja Toshniwal Paharia

Dr. primarily based clinical-radiological diagnosis and management of oral lesions and situations and connected maxillofacial problems.


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