ERIC Number: ED335618
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Apr
Reference Count: N/A
Predicting Change in Postpartum Depression: An Individual Growth Curve Approach.
Recently, methodologists interested in examining problems associated with measuring change have suggested that developmental researchers should focus upon assessing change at both intra-individual and inter-individual levels. This study used an application of individual growth curve analysis to the problem of maternal postpartum depression. Traditional research on predictors of postpartum maternal mood has focused on predicting depression at a single point in time postpartum. The purpose of this study was to predict longitudinal change in depression scores taken at 3.5 months and 8.5 months postpartum. Subjects (N=138) were participating in a large study of pregnancy and the transition to parenthood. Individual growth curve analysis revealed that initial depression and emotional lability observed at 3.5 months pregnancy significantly accounted for variance in the slope of depression scores over these four times. Initial depression was found to be negatively associated with postpartum depression; emotional lability was found to be positively associated with postpartum depression. The superiority of this growth curve analysis lies in its ability to predict change in maternal mood over several time points during pregnancy and parenthood, whereas previous methods have focused on predicting a single depression score at some point postpartum. This method allows for a more detailed analysis of individual differences in patterns of development. (Author/ABL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Child Health and Human Development (NIH), Bethesda, MD.
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Postpartum Depression
Note: Paper presented at the Biennial Meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development (Seattle, WA, April 18-20, 1991).