Postpartum depression in women who survived severe maternal morbidity

Abstract Background Severe maternal morbidity is increasingly known as a useful indicator of the safety and quality of maternal care, and may affect the mother´s mental health. Objective To evaluate the relationship between severe maternal morbidity (near miss) and symptoms of postpartum depression. Method Descriptive study of prospective cohort. The sample consisted of a total of 549 puerperal women from two public maternity hospitals in the state of Sergipe. We applied the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) to identify the prevalence of postpartum depression. The statistical analysis was performed using chi-square test of U-Mann-Whitney and the Spearman rank correlation coefficient, with significance level of α ≤ 0.05%. Results 156 (56%) of the mothers exposed to severe maternal obesity, and 45 (17%) of the non-exposed mothers showed a strong association and greater chance (ORC: 24.0; 95% CI: 7.23-79.7) to develop postpartum depression. Conclusion Severe maternal morbidity has a negative impact on women's mental health, and increases the vulnerability to mental illness. It is fundamental for the quality of maternal and child care to implement public policies that ensure prevention and coping strategies.