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Analysis of positive Edinburgh depression scale referrals to a consultation liaison psychiatry service in a two-year period

Authors

  • Simone T. Harvey,

    Corresponding author
    1. Consultation Liaison Psychiatry, Princess Alexandra Hospital and Health Service District, and
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    • Simone T. Harvey, MHN RN, B. Nurs, GDip. Soc Sc.-Counselling.

  • Paul K.K. Pun

    1. Consultation Liaison Psychiatry, Princess Alexandra Hospital and Health Service District, and
    2. Department of Psychiatry, University of Queensland, South Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
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    • Paul K.K. Pun, MBBs, FRANZCP.


Ms Simone Harvey, Consultation Liaison Psychiatry, 2nd Floor Aubigny Place, Mater Hospital, Raymond Terrace, South Brisbane, Qld 4101, Australia. Email: 2psyap@mater.org.au

Abstract

ABSTRACT:  Antenatal depression is a depressive episode that begins in pregnancy and is often a predictor of postnatal depression. The main aim of this study was to examine the prevalence of antenatal depression and other psychiatric conditions in women referred to a consultation liaison psychiatry service because of positive scores on the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale. The other aim was to review known risk factors in the women and note any significant findings. An audit of all women referred to the psychiatry team because of positive Edinburgh scores during a 2-year period was completed. Information about Edinburgh scores, clinical diagnoses at the time of the psychiatric appointment, and factors such as relationship status, domestic violence, ethnicity, and substance use was noted. According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders: Fourth Edition criteria: 36.5% of the women had an adjustment disorder, 13% had a major depression, 10% had dysthymia, 8% had a recurrent depressive disorder, 2% had post-traumatic stress disorder, and 2% had a borderline personality disorder. The findings demonstrated the usefulness of using a screening tool such as the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale in detecting women requiring psychiatric intervention and highlighted the importance of a psychiatric interview assessment to interpret the scores of screened patients in terms of clinically relevant syndromes.

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