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Journal of Pregnancy
Volume 2012, Article ID 521431, 7 pages
Clinical Study

No Relationship between Maternal Iron Status and Postpartum Depression in Two Samples in China

1Center for Human Growth and Development, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109, USA
2Department of Psychology, Ashkelon Academic College, 78109 Ashkelon, Israel
3Department of Child Health Care, Children’s Hospital Zhejiang University School of Medicine, Hangzhou 310003, China
4Department of Pediatrics, Peking University First Hospital, Beijing 100034, China
5Women’s and Children’s Health Center, Peking University, Beijing 100034, China
6Department of Clinical Laboratory, Peking University First Hospital, Beijing 100034, China
7Department of Psychology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109, USA
8Department of Pediatrics and Communicable Diseases, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109, USA

Received 2 February 2012; Revised 27 April 2012; Accepted 30 April 2012

Academic Editor: Laura Murray-Kolb

Copyright © 2012 Rinat Armony-Sivan et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Maternal iron status is thought to be related to postpartum depressive symptoms. The purpose of the present study was to evaluate the relationship between pre- and postnatal maternal iron status and depressive symptoms in pilot ( 𝑛 = 1 3 7 ) and confirmatory ( 𝑛 = 5 6 7 ) samples of Chinese women. Iron status was evaluated at mid- and late pregnancy and 3 days postpartum. The Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) was used to assess maternal postpartum depression 24–48 hours after delivery and 6 weeks later. In the pilot sample, correlations between early- and late-pregnancy maternal Hb and EPDS scores at 6 weeks were 𝑟 = 0 . 0 7 and −0.01, respectively (nonsignificant). In the confirmatory sample, the correlations between maternal iron measures (Hb, MCV, ZPP, ferritin, sTfR, and sTfR Index) in mid- or late pregnancy or 3 days postpartum and EPDS scores shortly after delivery or at 6 weeks were also low (r values < 0.10). EPDS scores in anemic and nonanemic mothers did not differ, regardless of sample or timing of maternal iron status assessment. In addition, women with or without possible PPD were similar in iron status in both samples. Thus, there was no relationship between maternal iron status and postpartum depression in these samples.