Interpersonal psychotherapy for depressed antepartum women: a pilot study

Am J Psychiatry. 1997 Jul;154(7):1028-30. doi: 10.1176/ajp.154.7.1028.


Objective: Antenatal depression, a substantial risk factor for postpartum depression, occurs in 10% of pregnant women, but no clinical treatment trials of antenatal depression exist. In an effort to establish treatment guidelines for depression during pregnancy, the author reports on a treatment program using interpersonal psychotherapy for antepartum depression.

Method: A 16-week open pilot trial conducted with 13 pregnant women who met DSM-III-R criteria for major depression.

Results: The women's mean depression ratings decreased significantly from week 0 to week 16 of the treatment program.

Conclusions: Interpersonal psychotherapy for antepartum depression appears to be an effective alternative to pharmacotherapy in pregnancy. This study served as a pilot for an ongoing controlled clinical treatment trial.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Depressive Disorder / diagnosis
  • Depressive Disorder / psychology
  • Depressive Disorder / therapy*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Pilot Projects
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications / therapy*
  • Psychiatric Status Rating Scales
  • Psychotherapy, Brief*
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Treatment Outcome