Date of Award
Open Access Thesis
Master of Public Health (MPH)
School of Public Health
Objective: To determine whether prenatal depressive symptoms are related to sexual risk outcomes 12 months postpartum.
Methods: Participants included 757 pregnant women aged 14-21 years, mainly Latina (54.4%) and Black, non-Latina (37.0%). Women completed structured interviews during the second and third trimester of pregnancy and one-year postpartum. Depressive symptoms were measured using the affect-only items of the Center for Epidemiologic Studies-Depression Scale (CES-D). Outcomes included sexual risk behavior (percent condom use, number of partners) and sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) measured via laboratory testing.
Results: Prenatal depressive symptoms significantly predict a decrease in condom use one-year postpartum, even when controlling for previous risk behavior and current knowledge. There is no significant association between prenatal depressive symptoms and number of partners or diagnosed STDs.
Conclusions: Results indicate a large young, urban, pregnant women of color experience depressive symptoms, which may in turn negatively impact their condom use behaviors. Further research on prenatal depressive symptoms and its effects is needed to determine the value of screening for depression during pregnancy.
Taylor, Abigail, "Prenatal Depressive Symptoms And Sexual Risk Among Young Urban Pregnant Women Of Color" (2014). Public Health Theses. 1285.