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Postpartum Depression

  1. Pim Cuijpers

Published Online: 30 JAN 2010

DOI: 10.1002/9780470479216.corpsy0697

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

How to Cite

Cuijpers, P. 2010. Postpartum Depression. Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology. 1–3.

Author Information

  1. VU University Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 30 JAN 2010


For a diagnosis of postpartum depression to be made, the patient must meet the criteria for a major depressive disorder as specified in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV-TR; American Psychiatric Association, 2000). Furthermore, the onset of the episode of major depression should be within 4 weeks postpartum. That a woman with postpartum depression meets the criteria of a major depression means that she has five or more of the following symptoms (and at least one of these symptoms is 1 or 2): (1) a depressed mood most of the day, (2) a markedly diminished interest or pleasure in all or almost all activities most of the day, (3) significant weight loss or weight gain or a considerable decrease or increase in appetite, (4) insomnia or hypersomnia, (5) psychomotor agitation or retardation, (6) fatigue or loss of energy, (7) feelings of worthlessness or excessive guilt, (8) concentration problems, and (9) thoughts of death or suicide.


  • major depressive disorder;
  • prevention;
  • screening;
  • psychotherapy