The association between diabetes and postpartum depression

Emily S. Miller*, Marisa R. Peri, Dana R. Gossett

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


This study aims to estimate if diabetic women were more likely to experience postpartum depression symptoms than women without diabetes. This was a prospective cohort of women who received prenatal care at a hospital-affiliated prenatal clinic serving low-income women in Chicago, Illinois. For the primary analysis, women were divided by diabetes status (i.e., no diabetes or either gestational diabetes or pre-pregnancy diabetes). Postpartum depression was defined as a positive screen on the Patient Health Questionnaire-9. Rates of postpartum depression were compared, stratified by diabetic status. A multivariable logistic regression was performed to control for potential confounders. A planned secondary analysis compared women with pre-pregnancy diabetes to those without pre-pre-pregnancy diabetes. Three hundred and five women consented to participate of whom 100 (30.5 %) had gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) and 33 (10.8 %) had pre-pregnancy diabetes. Compared to women without any diabetes, women with diabetes (either GDM or pre-pregnancy diabetes) had similar rates of antenatal [(OR) 0.69, 95 % CI) 0.44–1.08] and postpartum depression (OR 0.74, 95 % CI 0.33–1.66). However, postpartum depression was more common among women with pre-pregnancy diabetes (34.8 %) compared to non-diabetic women (16.7 %) (OR 2.67, 95 % CI 1.05–6.78). This association persisted even after adjusting for potential confounders (aOR 2.67, 95 % CI 1.05–9.79). Gestational diabetes was not associated with increased rates of depression. However, women with pre-pregnancy diabetes are more likely to experience postpartum depression compared to women without pre-pregnancy diabetes, even after adjusting for related comorbidities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)183-186
Number of pages4
JournalArchives of Women's Mental Health
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 1 2016


  • Depression
  • Diabetes
  • Gestational diabetes
  • Postpartum depression

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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