Post-traumatic stress disorder following childbirth: current issues and recommendations for future research

J Psychosom Obstet Gynaecol. 2008 Dec;29(4):240-50. doi: 10.1080/01674820802034631.


Background: An increasing body of research shows that a proportion of women experience significant symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) following childbirth.

Aims and method: An international group of researchers, clinicians, and user-group representatives met in 2006 to discuss the research to date into PTSD following childbirth, issues and debates within the field, and recommendations for future research. This paper reports the content of four discussions on (1) prevalence and comorbidity, (2) screening and treatment, (3) diagnostic and conceptual issues, and (4) theoretical issues.

Conclusions: Current knowledge from the perspectives of the researchers is summarized, dilemmas are articulated and recommendations for future research into PTSD following childbirth are made. In addition, methodological and conceptual issues are considered.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Comorbidity
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Mass Screening
  • Mental Disorders / epidemiology
  • Parturition / psychology*
  • Pregnancy
  • Prevalence
  • Puerperal Disorders / epidemiology
  • Puerperal Disorders / etiology*
  • Puerperal Disorders / prevention & control
  • Research
  • Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic / diagnosis
  • Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic / epidemiology
  • Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic / etiology*
  • Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic / prevention & control