Korean J Women Health Nurs.  2021 Dec;27(4):326-336. 10.4069/kjwhn.2021.11.17.

Factors influencing prenatal and postpartum depression in Korea: a prospective cohort study

  • 1College of Nursing, Chungnam National University, Daejeon, Korea
  • 2Department of Nursing, College of Health and Welfare, Woosong University, Daejeon, Korea
  • 3Department of Nursing, Yeoju Institute of Technology, Yeoju, Korea


This study explored the prevalence of prenatal and postpartum depression and its influencing factors from 20 weeks of pregnancy to 12 weeks postpartum.
Using a prospective cohort study design, data on women’s depression and its influencing factors were collected at 20, 28, and 36 weeks of pregnancy and at 2, 6, and 12 weeks postpartum. The subjects were 219 prenatal pregnant women and 181 spouses during pregnancy and 183 postpartum mothers and 130 spouses after childbirth. Depressive symptoms were assessed by the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale and influencing factors were measured by the Postpartum Depression Predictors Inventory-Revised, parity, and spousal depression.
The prevalence of maternal depression was 10.5% to 21.5% before birth, and it was 22.4% to 32.8% postpartum. The prevalence slightly decreased during the prenatal period but peaked at 2 weeks postpartum. Antenatal depression was influenced by low socioeconomic status, lower self-esteem, having experienced prenatal depression, having experienced prenatal anxiety, a previous history of depression, lower social support, lower marital satisfaction, and higher life stress. The factors influencing postpartum depression were lower self-esteem, having experienced prenatal depression, having experienced prenatal anxiety, lower social support, lower marital satisfaction, and higher life stress, as well as infant temperament and maternal blues. Parity and spousal depression had no impacts.
The prevalence and influencing factors of maternal depression changed over time. Nurses need to screen women accordingly during the perinatal period and should provide education or counseling to prevent depression and promote adjustment to parenthood.


Cohort studies; Pregnancy; Depression, Postnatal; Risk factors

Cited by  1 articles

Association of postpartum depression with postpartum posttraumatic stress disorder in Korean mothers: a longitudinal survey
Hyunjin Cho, Minseon Koh, Hyeji Yoo, Sukhee Ahn
Korean J Women Health Nurs. 2022;28(1):46-55.    doi: 10.4069/kjwhn.2022.02.18.



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