Weight Changes in Postpartum Women With Remitted Depression
J Clin Psychiatry 2005;66(3):291-293
© Copyright 2015 Physicians Postgraduate Press, Inc.
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Objective: To compare weight loss after birth in
women who took the antidepressants nortriptyline or sertraline or
placebo in 2 clinical studies designed to prevent recurrent
postpartum major depression.
Method: Data were collected from 1995 to 2001.
All subjects had at least 1 prior episode of Research Diagnostic
Criteria- or DSM-IV-defined major depressive disorder. Data on
weight were available for 467 weeks from 60 women who were
weighed 8 times from 2 to 17 weeks postpartum. The dependent
measures were weight at weeks 11 and 17 and weight change from
weeks 2 to 17 postpartum.
Results: At week 17, the women's weights ranged
from 109 to 268 lb. Their weight change ranged from +14 to -19 lb
over the 15-week postpartum period (mean = -1.8, SD = 5.1 lb).
After controlling for week 2 weights, the mean weights at week 17
for the women treated with nortriptyline, sertraline, or placebo
were not significantly different. Of 60 women with 3 or more
weight assessments, those who were randomly assigned to
nortriptyline lost weight more rapidly than the other 2 groups;
however, the mean weight change across all groups was only -1.8
lb (SD = 5.1 lb).
Conclusions: Weight loss was not compromised by
antidepressant pharmacotherapy. Postpartum weight retention
occurred in this group of nondepressed women with previous
histories of major depression independent of drug treatment.