Can the effects of maternal depression upon offspring development be extrapolated to the prebirth environment, making it the earliest of adverse life events? Increasing clinical and laboratory data indicate that maternal stress and depression during critical developmental windows carry a diverse array of harmful sequelae for the offspring. The effects witnessed in animal research include neurobiological and behavioral alterations that persist into adulthood. Paralleling the preclinical literature are human studies indicating similar acute effects. The clinical implications for the psychiatric treatment of depressed women who have children will be discussed.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology