Validation of a screening instrument for postpartum depression in Southern Brazil

J Psychosom Obstet Gynaecol. 2009 Dec;30(4):244-54. doi: 10.3109/01674820903254724.


Objectives: The objectives of this investigation was to assess the prevalence of postpartum depression in a sample of 101 women and to validate a Portuguese version of the Postpartum Depression Screening Scale (PDSS) in Southern Brazil.

Methods: Research volunteers completed the PDSS and underwent an assessment based on the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV disorders (SCID). Parameters under investigation included the demographic characteristics of the sample, internal structure, and discriminant validity.

Results: All questions in the Portuguese version of the PDSS attained significant Cronbach's alpha of 0.62. The factorial analysis of the Portuguese version of PDSS identified one principal factor that contributed 38.8% of the variance. The best cut-off score for the Portuguese version of the PDSS was a score of 81, which accounted for a sensitivity of 89% and a specificity of 72% in this sample.

Conclusions: The Portuguese version of the PDSS demonstrated sound psychometric properties. The results of the factorial analysis also demonstrated that the Portuguese version of the PDSS assesses postpartum depressive disorders in a coherent and integrated manner. The original English version of the PDSS was successfully adapted to Portuguese.

Publication types

  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Area Under Curve
  • Brazil / epidemiology
  • Chi-Square Distribution
  • Depression, Postpartum / diagnosis*
  • Depression, Postpartum / epidemiology*
  • Emotions
  • Factor Analysis, Statistical
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Mass Screening / methods
  • Patient Selection
  • Prevalence
  • Psychiatric Status Rating Scales
  • Psychometrics / methods
  • ROC Curve
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Translating