Saturday, May 19, 2007


Depression in teen girls

A study published in a recent issue of Archives of General Psychiatry links low birth weight and depression among adolescent girls, but not boys.

There were 1420 participants in this study done in North Carolina, 49% of them females. The cumulative prevalence of depression among adolescent girls with low birth weight was 38.1%, compared with 8.4% among girls who had normal birth weight after controlling for other adversities. When adversities were present, they affected the low weight girls more than the normal weight. The thinking is that fetal development has consequences for stress response. Low birth weight did not predict other psychiatric disorders in either boys or girls.

"Prediction from low birth weight to female adolescent depression: a test of competing hypotheses," by EJ Costello and others. Archives of General Psychiatry, 2007;64:338-344.

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