Citation Information :
Kale DP, Nadkarni TK, Pawar AP, Shah PM, Bansal V, Jassawala M, Bodhanwala M. Effects of COVID-19 Pandemic on Mental Health Status of COVID-positive Pregnant Women in a COVID Care Center: A Prospective Observational Study. J South Asian Feder Obs Gynae 2021; 13 (3):167-173.
Background: The global pandemic of the novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has created a public health emergency straining the entire human race. The population of antenatal and postnatal women is subjected to additional anxiety and psychological stress due to issues related to the pandemic like the public health measures, such as quarantine, and anxiety about the health of the fetus.
Aim: To study the prevalence of depression and anxiety in antenatal and postnatal women during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Materials and methods: We have screened 300 women in a COVID-19 care center for psychological depression and anxiety. The Edinburgh postpartum depression scale (EPDS) and also a self-reported questionnaire with COVID-specific anxiety questionnaire with eight items related to the COVID -9 pandemic were answered in graded response scale from 1 to 5. The clinical records identifying high-risk factors along with EPDS score and anxiety response were analyzed. EPDS greater than 13 was suggestive of probable depression. Anxiety questions were analyzed according to the percentage of questions that have been marked as ‘much’ and ‘very much’ responses.
Results: Among 300 women, the prevalence of depression was 43.3%. The anxiety question marked by 39% of women was about worries of the health of fetus graded as “very much” followed by that regarding the worries about delivery marked by 25.3% of women as very much.
Conclusion: The increased psychological distress among pregnant women irrespective of COVID-19 status is significant. The preventive mental health strategies should be integrated with antenatal and postnatal care of women during the pandemic.
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