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BACKGROUND: Little is known about the prevalence of and risk factors for common mental disorders (CMD) in pregnant women in low-income countries. The aim of this study was to establish the prevalence of and psychosocial risk factors for clinically significant symptoms of CMD in early and late pregnancy in women in rural Viet Nam. METHODS: A population-based sample of women was surveyed in early and late pregnancy. CMD were assessed by the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale-Viet Nam Validation and psychosocial risks by study-specific structured interviews. RESULTS: In total 497/523 (97%) eligible women were recruited and 419 (84%) provided complete data. Prevalence of CMD only in early pregnancy was 22.4% (95% CI 18.4-26.4); only in late pregnancy was 10.7% (95% CI 7.8-13.7) and at both assessment waves was 17.4% (95% CI 13.8-21.1). Non-economic and economic coincidental life adversity, intimate partner violence, past pregnancy loss, and childhood abuse were positively associated with persistent antenatal CMD. Older age, having a preference for the baby's sex, and nulli- or primiparity were risk factors for CMD in early pregnancy. CONCLUSIONS: Persistent antenatal CMD are prevalent in rural areas of Viet Nam. Psychosocial risk factors play a major role in this significant public health problem.

Original publication




Journal article


J Affect Disord

Publication Date





213 - 219


Adult, Female, Humans, Mental Disorders, Pregnancy, Pregnancy Trimester, First, Pregnancy Trimester, Third, Pregnant Women, Prevalence, Prospective Studies, Qualitative Research, Risk Factors, Rural Health, Socioeconomic Factors, Vietnam, Young Adult