Master's Culminating Experience
Healthcare, resources, and technology in the United States (U.S.) has improved, yet the U.S. ranks 29th in the world for the highest infant mortality rates – behind other less developed countries. Within the U.S., Ohio (and Hamilton County in particular) has high rates of infant mortality. Low birth weight and preterm births are a major cause of infant mortality. Data analysis was done consisting of descriptive statistics and Analysis of Variance of the prenatal patients served at the Cincinnati Health Department health centers who delivered in 2009, with dependent variables of birth weight and postpartum depression. Independent variables included maternal age, the trimester of entry into prenatal care, postpartum depression, and race. A p-value of < .05 was considered statistically significant. Relative to infant birth weight, maternal age was not statistically significant as a continuous variable (p = 0.2508), or when divided into age groups (p = 0.3819). The trimester of entry was not statistically significant relative to infant birth weight (p = 0.5294), but was statistically significant when the depression scale score was used as a dependent variable (p = 0.0388). The Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale score was also statistically significant relative to birth weight as a continuous variable (p = 0.0492, and when broken into scoring categories (p = 0.0273). Race was statistically significant relative to birth weight (p = 0.0059). In summary, maternal age and trimester of entry into prenatal care were not statistically significant relative to infant birth weight. However, the EPDS score and maternal race was statistically significant relative to infant birth weight. Further, the trimester of entry was statistically significant relative to the EPDS score. More studies are needed to further explore depression during the antenatal period relative to infant birth weight and to add credence to the supposition of the relationship between depression and LBW, and depression and trimester of entry.
Kohake, K. (2010). The Relationship of Maternal Age, Trimester of Entry into Prenatal Care, Maternal Postpartum Depression, and Race with Birth weight of Infants Born in Cincinnati, Ohio. Wright State University, Dayton, Ohio.