Examining Feasibility, Acceptability, and Preliminary Outcomes of a Culturally Adapted Evidence-Based Postpartum Depression Preventive Intervention for Women in Doha, Qatar: Protocol for a Randomized Controlled Trial

Sawssan R. Ahmed*, Felice Watt, Ziyad Riyad Mahfoud, Mona Korayem, Sara Buhmaid, Medhat Alberry, Ibrahim Mamoun Ibrahim, S. Darius Tandon

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: Postpartum depression and anxiety are the 2 most common perinatal mental health disorders, with prevalence rates higher among women living in the Middle East than in most Western countries. The negative outcomes associated with postpartum depression and anxiety are profound and include less responsive parenting and compromised infant and young child development. Although interventions exist to prevent postpartum depression and anxiety, to date, there have been no studies that have attempted to prevent postpartum depression or anxiety among Arabic-speaking women in the Middle East, including Qatar. Objective: The purpose of this study is to conduct a randomized controlled trial (RCT) of an evidence-based postpartum depression preventive intervention—Mothers and Babies (MB)—culturally adapted for use with Arabic-speaking women in Doha, Qatar. MB is guided by a cognitive behavioral therapy framework that focuses on increasing pleasant activities, promoting healthy thought patterns, and increasing the type and frequency of personal contacts. MB is tailored to specific needs and issues related to pregnancy and the postpartum period. Methods: A multidisciplinary and multiethnic investigator team adapted MB to promote cultural and contextual fit for Arabic-speaking women. Intervention concepts were reviewed to ensure core content would be understood by Arabic-speaking women in Qatar. Subsequently, images, activities, and examples in the intervention manuals were adapted, as needed, to make the content more relevant to Arab culture. To deliver the adapted intervention, 30 Arabic-speaking individuals with mental health backgrounds were trained. The adapted intervention was subsequently pilot-tested with 10 pregnant women receiving prenatal care at Sidra Hospital in Doha. We are now conducting an RCT to examine the effectiveness of the adapted intervention. We plan to enroll 210 pregnant individuals who are Arabic-speaking, with 1:1 randomization to the MB intervention or usual prenatal care. Among the enrolled participants, a stratified subsample of 40 pregnant women with diabetes is being recruited. Data collection will take place at baseline and a 6-month follow-up. The primary outcomes are depressive and anxiety symptoms and perceived stress. Diabetes self-care is the exploratory outcome for the subsample of individuals with diabetes. Intervention implementation will be assessed via client and provider surveys during and after intervention delivery. Power and sample size were calculated using a 2-sided 5% effort rate and assumed analyses on the individual level, accounting for attrition of 20%. Results: The cultural adaptation and pilot study of the adapted MB intervention are completed. A total of 157 women have been enrolled in the RCT as of March 31, 2023. Conclusions: This study is highly innovative, as it is the first study to our knowledge to examine the effectiveness of an evidence-based postpartum depression preventive intervention in the Middle East. Limitations include a single follow-up time point and a small subsample of individuals with diabetes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere11623
JournalJMIR Research Protocols
Volume12
DOIs
StatePublished - 2023

Keywords

  • Arabic
  • cultural adaptation
  • intervention
  • postpartum depression
  • prevention

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Examining Feasibility, Acceptability, and Preliminary Outcomes of a Culturally Adapted Evidence-Based Postpartum Depression Preventive Intervention for Women in Doha, Qatar: Protocol for a Randomized Controlled Trial'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this