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Prevalence and determinants of antenatal common mental disorders among women in India: a systematic review and meta-analysis


To review the available evidence about the prevalence and determinants of antenatal common mental disorders (antenatal CMDs) among women in India. We searched Ovid Medline, Embase and Psyinfo systematically from date of inception to Oct. 31, 2019 for publications in English language on the prevalence of antenatal CMDs and their determinants among women in India. All study designs were included. Quality was assessed with Standard Quality Assessment Criteria for Evaluating Primary Research Papers. We performed a meta-analysis using a random effects model. Twenty-seven studies involving 7780 women were analysed. There was a high degree of heterogeneity ((I2 = 97.53%). Publication bias [Egger bias = 0.65 (95% CI: 0.36; .94)] was evident. The overall pooled estimate of the prevalence of antenatal CMDs was 21.87% (95% CI: 17.46; 26.29). Significant risk factors reported in the 18 studies which examined them were negative reaction of husband or in-laws to the dowry, difficult relationship with husband/in-laws, lack of support or experiencing violence perpetrated by an intimate partner and preference for or feeling pressured to have a male child. Protective factors were having more education and being employed, having a supportive husband and opportunities for recreation during pregnancy. Antenatal CMDs are highly prevalent among women in India. There is an urgent need for locally developed policies and programmes for mental health promotion during pregnancy, preventive and early intervention for antenatal CMDs among women to be integrated into maternity care in India.

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No funding was received for this study. TT is supported by an Early Career Fellowship from the Australian National Health and Medical Research Council. JF is supported by a Professorial Fellowship from Finkel Family Foundation.

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Correspondence to Harish Kalra.

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Kalra, H., Tran, T.D., Romero, L. et al. Prevalence and determinants of antenatal common mental disorders among women in India: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Arch Womens Ment Health (2020).

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  • Pregnancy
  • Common mental disorders
  • Prevalence
  • India