High Plasma Oxytocin Levels Decrease Postpartum Depression Symptoms in Women Ages 25-45 Postnatal: A Literature Review

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Title: High Plasma Oxytocin Levels Decrease Postpartum Depression Symptoms in Women Ages 25-45 Postnatal: A Literature Review
Authors: Matharu, Aavan
Mathew, Joan
Asafo-Adjei, Priscilla
Riviet, Emilie
Date: 2016-11-19
Abstract: Background: Oxytocin is known for its capacity to alter social interactions and mother-infant bonding; as such, alterations in plasma level concentrations of this hormone are believed to be correlated with symptoms of postpartum depression (PDD). Objective: To assess the literature provided by such databases as Scopus, Pubmed, Medline, Ovid and Web of Science to investigate the association between oxytocin plasma levels and PDD in women in the postnatal period. Methods: The literature review was restricted to the following keywords: “oxytocin”, plasma oxytocin levels”, “postnatal depression”, “postpartum depression”, “oxytocin and postpartum depression”, and “oxytocin and maternal depression”. Articles selected were in English and experimental, consisting of prospective studies measuring plasma levels of oxytocin in participants, while also evaluating for severity of PDD symptoms using questionnaires such as the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS). Results: A total of 11 articles were reviewed. All 11 studies demonstrated a significant relationship between blood oxytocin concentrations and onset of PDD, as well as an association between fluctuations of this hormone and PDD symptom severity. Conclusion: The literature supports that plasma oxytocin levels significantly predict onset of depressive symptoms during the postpartum period. Further research is required to assess whether other factors—such as the hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal (HPA) axis, or DNA methylation— in correlation with plasma oxytocin levels can produce similar outcomes in postnatal women.
URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10393/35549
CollectionSciences de la santé - Affiches // Health Sciences - Research Posters
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