First medically described by Marcé in the 18th century, the disorders of anxiety during pregnancy, especially those in the first trimester have profound features of turmoil.
In contrast, depression during pregnancy has been relatively neglected.
Indeed, pregnancy has been thought to protect against depression.
Studies of antenatal psychopathology have mostly examined antenatal mood as a predictor of postnatal depression.
However, when a psychiatric disorder is added to or exacerbated by the pregnancy then the problem requires expert knowledge from more than one area of medicine.
This paper looks at pregnancy and the relationship with depression, eating disorders, and pathological fear of childbirth or tokophobia.
It also examines the outcome for these women and their babies. It is now recognised that death from suicide is the leading cause of maternal death overall.Research in these areas is relatively sparse but an attempt is made to collate what is known.lthough the state of pregnancy is both normal for, and often desired by, women in early adulthood, it is not uncommon to experience anxiety at the physical and emotional consequences of the gravid state.It is not the purpose of this paper to comment on psychiatric and psychological descriptions of the “normal” pregnant woman but concentrate on some pathological psychiatric conditions that may effect pregnant women.Anxiety and fear of pregnancy and childbirth are documented features of eating disorders, mood disorders, and pathological dread and avoidance of childbirth or tokophobia.There are disorders in which anxiety is the primary symptom of a pathological mental state.