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Postnatal home visits from healthcare professionals show promise for preventing postnatal depression

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Q Do psychosocial and psychological interventions prevent postnatal depression?


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Systematic review.

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MEDLINE (1966–2004); EMBASE (1980–2004); CINAHL (1982–2004), Cochrane central register of controlled trials; Cochrane pregnancy and childbirth group trials register; Cochrane depression, anxiety, and neurosis trials register; hand searches of references lists and review articles; and consultation with experts in the field.

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Inclusion criteria: high quality (using Cochrane recommendations for assessment) randomised controlled trials (RCTs) of ante or early postnatal psychosocial or psychological interventions versus normal care for the prevention of postnatal depression. Interventions included antenatal and postnatal classes, lay home visits, early postpartum follow up, continuity of care, home visits, or interpersonal psychotherapy and debriefing. Exclusion criteria: purely educational interventions; RCTs in women with depression or depressive symptoms. Analysis: the pooled relative risk of postnatal depression was calculated using fixed and random …

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