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Anita Clayton, MD: Women's Issues in Psychiatry

Postpartum depression rates have increased since the COVID-19 pandemic.

Many women every year are faced with postpartum psychiatric concerns following giving birth.

And the rates and severity of postpartum depression and postpartum anxiety has only increased during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Anita Clayton, MD, chair of psychiatry and neurobehavioral sciences at the University of Virginia School of Medicine, explained in an interview with HCPLive® why many women are facing these postpartum concerns.

“So I’d say that women who do have postpartum depression often attribute it to other things,” Clayton said. “The baby is up in the night and they need to breastfeed it. That they aren’t getting much sleep. That they need to lose weight.”

Clayton recently co-chaired the 2022 Annual Psychiatric Times™ World CME Conference in San Diego from August 11-13.

Clayton also discussed how critical it is for OBGYN doctors to collaborate with psychiatrists when an issue is identified.

“I think the area that OBGYN’s are most concerned about is postpartum depression from their mothers or just from neglect because the mother is depressed,” she said.

Clayton went on to say there is a recommended screening tool commonly used in the US for postpartum depression and there is also an intravenous treatment that has shown promise in this patient population.