Factors Associated with Psychological Morbidity in Mothers of Pre-term Infants: A Study from Wesley Guild Hospital, Nigeria

Ukpong, D. I. (2011)


This was a cross-sectional prospective study of 57 mothers of pre-term infants consecutively recruited from the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) of Wesley Guild Hospital Ilesa, Nigeria between April and August 2009. The mothers were screened for psychological morbidity using the General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-30), and the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Inventory (HADS). More than one-third of these mothers (36.8%), showed high levels of psychological distress on the GHQ30, and 19.3% were cases of depression, whereas 12.3% were cases of anxiety on the HADS. Psychological morbidity and depression were related to both neonatal birth weight and gestational age. There was no association between either maternal age at birth or parity with maternal depression and psychological morbidity. These results indicate that the detection and effective management of postnatal psychological morbidity in mothers of pre-term infants, should be given priority in the design of maternal and child health services in Nigeria.