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Related but different: distinguishing postpartum depression and fatigue among women seeking help for unsettled infant behaviours

Wilson, Nathan, Wynter, Karen, Fisher, Jane and Bei, Bei 2018, Related but different: distinguishing postpartum depression and fatigue among women seeking help for unsettled infant behaviours, BMC psychiatry, vol. 18, pp. 1-9, doi: 10.1186/s12888-018-1892-7.

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Title Related but different: distinguishing postpartum depression and fatigue among women seeking help for unsettled infant behaviours
Author(s) Wilson, Nathan
Wynter, KarenORCID iD for Wynter, Karen orcid.org/0000-0003-4620-7691
Fisher, Jane
Bei, Bei
Journal name BMC psychiatry
Volume number 18
Article ID 309
Start page 1
End page 9
Total pages 9
Publisher BMC
Place of publication London, Eng.
Publication date 2018
ISSN 1471-244X
Keyword(s) Confirmatory factor analysis
Depression
Depressive
Fatigue
Postnatal
Postpartum
Science & Technology
Life Sciences & Biomedicine
Psychiatry
SCALE-RASCH ANALYSES
MOTHER-BABY UNIT
SEVERITY SCALE
MATERNAL FATIGUE
PSYCHOMETRIC PROPERTIES
MULTIPLE-SCLEROSIS
SYMPTOMS
SLEEP
COHORT
PERIOD
Summary BACKGROUND: A growing body of evidence in relatively healthy populations suggests that postpartum depression and fatigue are likely distinct but related experiences. However, differentiating depression and fatigue in clinical settings remains a challenge. This study aimed to assess if depression and fatigue are distinct constructs in women with relatively high fatigue and psychological distress symptoms attending a residential program that assists with unsettled infant behaviour.

METHODS: 167 women (age: M = 34.26, SD = 4.23) attending a private residential early parenting program completed the Depression Anxiety Stress Scale (DASS21-D), Fatigue Severity Scale (FSS) and self-report sleep variables before program commencement. Confirmatory Factor Analysis examined the associations between depression and fatigue latent factors.

RESULTS: A two-factor model of separate but related depression and fatigue constructs provided a significantly better fit to the data than a one-factor model of combined depression and fatigue (p < .001). In the two-factor model, the depression and fatigue latent factors were moderately correlated (.41). Further predictive utility of this two-factor model was demonstrated as both depression and fatigue factors were independently predicted by worse self-reported sleep efficiency.

CONCLUSIONS: This study provides empirical evidence that for women attending a clinical service with relatively high fatigue and psychological distress, postpartum depression and fatigue remain separate but related experiences. These findings suggest that in women seeking clinical support in the postpartum period, both depression and fatigue need to be carefully assessed to ensure accurate diagnoses, and (b) whilst depression intervention may improve fatigue, targeted fatigue intervention may also be warranted.
Language eng
DOI 10.1186/s12888-018-1892-7
Field of Research 1103 Clinical Sciences
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2018, The Authors
Free to Read? Yes
Use Rights Creative Commons Attribution licence
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30114221

Document type: Journal Article
Collections: School of Nursing and Midwifery
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Every reasonable effort has been made to ensure that permission has been obtained for items included in DRO. If you believe that your rights have been infringed by this repository, please contact drosupport@deakin.edu.au.