Promising New Treatments for Postpartum Depression


Postpartum depression and major depressive disorder in pregnant and postpartum women are severely underdiagnosed and undertreated. How can we more effectively help this patient population?

“Overall, the highest rates of depression in women occur in the reproductive years, between 24 and 44 years of age. About 10% to 16% of pregnant women have major depressive disorder (MDD). About 80% of women postpartum have ‘baby blues’ for about 2 weeks or so, but this may progress to postpartum depression (PPD), which is also seen in 10% to 15% of women. These problems are severely diagnosed and undertreated.”

In this Mental Health Minute video, Anita Clayton, MD, of the University of Virginia and Nathan Bryson, PhD, of Reunion Neuroscience discuss diagnosis of PPD and MDD in pregnant and postpartum women, as well as the potential of faster-acting and more convenient psychedelic-derived treatments for PPD and MDD in this patient population.

Dr Clayton is chair of psychiatry and neurobehavioral sciences and professor of clinical obstetrics and gynecology at the University of Virginia. She has published more than 200 peer-reviewed papers and was named to the 2019-2020 Best Doctors in America list. She has focused her clinical practice and research on MDD and mood disorders associated with reproductive life events in women, including PPD.

Dr Bryson is the chief scientific officer for Reunion Neuroscience (NASDAQ: REUN), a biotechnology company committed to developing safer, effective treatment solutions for millions of patients suffering with their mental health—starting with areas in dire need, including PPD.

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