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Postpartum Psych Disorders Lower Odds of Subsequent Children

Reduction in rate of having second live birth disappears if the first child dies

MONDAY, March 30, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Women with postpartum psychiatric disorders have a lower probability of subsequent live birth, according to a study published online March 29 in Human Reproduction.

Xiaoqin Liu, Ph.D., from Aarhus University in Denmark, and colleagues conducted a population-based cohort study involving 414,571 women who had their first live birth during 1997 to 2015. The women were followed for a maximum of 19.5 years from the date of the first live-born delivery.

The researchers found that after their first live-born delivery, 1.0 percent of women experienced postpartum psychiatric disorders. The probability of having a subsequent live birth was 69.1 percent (95 percent confidence interval [CI], 67.4 to 70.7 percent) and 82.3 percent (95 percent CI, 82.1 to 82.4 percent), respectively, among women with and those without postpartum psychiatric disorders. Compared with women without postpartum psychiatric disorders, those with postpartum psychiatric disorders had a 33 percent reduction in the rate of having a second live birth (hazard ratio, 0.67; 95 percent CI, 0.64 to 0.69). If the first child died, the association disappeared (hazard ratio, 1.01; 95 percent CI, 0.85 to 1.20). A more pronounced reduction in the live birth rate was seen if postpartum psychiatric disorders required hospitalizations (hazard ratio, 0.54 [95 percent CI, 0.47 to 0.61] if the child survived; hazard ratio, 0.49 [95 percent CI, 0.23 to 1.04] if the child died).

“The reason why women with postpartum psychiatric disorders choose to have fewer children needs to be explored further,” Liu said in a statement.

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