Mental health problems often remain long after miscarriage or stillbirth

Depression and anxiety that follow miscarriage or stillbirth often continue for years, even after the birth of a healthy baby.

Researchers in Rochester, NY, analysed data from a longitudinal study of 13,133 pregnant women who had reported the number of previous miscarriages and stillbirths they had experienced. The women were assessed for symptoms of depression and anxiety twice during their pregnancy (at 18 and 32 weeks), and four times after giving birth (at 8 weeks, 8 months, 21 months and 33 months).

Women who had lost a baby in the past experienced significantly higher levels of anxiety and depression during pregnancy, and the symptoms continued for nearly three years after they gave birth to a healthy baby.

“The birth of a healthy baby does not resolve the mental health problems that many women experience after a miscarriage or stillbirth,” lead researcher Dr Emma Robertson Blackmore (PhD) said. 

“This finding