According to researchers, some women may experience depression for years after having a miscarriage.
Lead researcher Emma Robertson Blackmore, an assistant professor of psychiatry at the University of Rochester Medical Center, and her colleagues studied 13, 133 pregnant women in Britain taking part in a long-term study call the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children.
The women were asked about miscarriages and stillbirths and they were assessed for symptoms of depression and anxiety twice during their pregnancies and four times after giving birth. It was found that 21% reported one or more miscarriages, while 108 reported one stillbirth. Three of the women reported having had two still births.
"We found no evidence that affective symptoms associated with previous prenatal loss resolve with the birth of a healthy child," said Blackmore "Rather, previous prenatal loss showed a persisting prediction of depressive and anxiety symptoms well after what would conventionally be defined as the postnatal period."
The study also found that, of the women with one prior miscarriage or stillbirth, almost 13% still had symptoms of depression 33 months after the birth of their healthy child. Of those with two previous pregnancy losses, almost 19% had symptoms of depression 33 months after giving birth.
The study appears in the British Journal of Psychiatry.