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Depression during pregnancy poses risks

July 21, 2009 5:59:50 AM PDT
Postpartum depression is a well-known and widely-discussed condition. But doctors are now learning more about an equally common problem, depression during pregnancy.Scientists have found that pregnant women with depression are more likely to deliver a baby prematurely.

Researchers studied nearly 800 pregnant women. Forty-four percent of them had depressive symptoms and twice the risk of delivering a baby before 37 weeks of gestation. Researchers are still trying to determine the exact link between depression and early delivery.

Doctors say premature delivery is the number one cause of infant mortality.

The study is published in the January issue of Human Reproduction.

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