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A blood sample could identify women at risk of depression during pregnancy

According to some research, depression is the number one health complication during and after pregnancy, and having it increases the risk of complications for mom and baby, such as affecting neurological development in childhood, as well as negatively influencing the bond between mothers and children.

Therefore, detecting cases of depression in pregnancy as soon as possible is extremely important, although it is not always easy to do so because many of its symptoms can go unnoticed.

Fortunately, and thanks to advances in technology, little by little we have been able to see new tools that allow us to identify these symptoms early and thus attend to the mental health of pregnant women.

An example of this is a recent study, in which blood markers were identified that could predict whether pregnant women will suffer from depression.

The study

Published in the journal ‘Translational Psychiatry’, this new research analyzed the blood samples of pregnant women at different stages of their gestation, in order to discover if there was something in them that worked to predict whether they would suffer from depression during their pregnancy .

In addition to analyzing blood samples throughout the three trimesters of pregnancy , the volunteers who participated in the study also underwent clinical evaluations, whose objective was to detect depressive symptoms throughout their pregnancies.

According to the results, a specific group of biomarkers was found that could help predict the possibility of a pregnant woman suffering from depression. The study authors comment on the importance of this finding:

…the addition of biomarkers as tools to predict future depression risk, acting as ‘depression warning’ signs, could help clinicians schedule more frequent follow-up visits, consider stress reduction techniques and psychotherapy, include supportive or cognitive-behavioral techniques, or possibly intervene with preventative measures before worrying symptoms begin ,” they comment in the study.

Let’s remember that according to some studies and statistics, one in four women suffers from depression during pregnancy, so this type of analysis would undoubtedly help millions of women and their babies.

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