Effect of Kangaroo Mother Care on Maternal Anxiety and Depression States at the Neonatal ICU: A Prospective Cohort Study
Objectives. To determine the effect of kangaroo mother care (KMC) on anxiety and depression of mothers of low-birth-weight neonates during the immediate newborn period.
Method. Eligible participants were mothers of low-birth-weight infants (birth weight ≤2500 grams) admitted at a tertiary hospital's neonatal intensive care unit. Mothers were instructed on providing KMC daily to their infants during the study period (first seven days of life).
Main Outcome Measure(s). The primary study outcome was the effect of KMC in improving maternal anxiety and depression scores in the immediate postpartum period using the locally validated Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale-Pilipino (HADS/HADS-P).
Results. A total of 171 mothers were enrolled in the study. Only 79 mothers provided KMC, and the rest (92) did not provide KMC. The anxiety and depression scores improved significantly from day 1 to 7 postpartum in both groups (p<0.05). Frequency of mothers categorized as having severe anxiety significantly decreased over time whether they provided KMC or not (KMC: 40.5%, 13.9%, 7.6% at Day 1 and 7 postpartum and day of discharge; No KMC: 35.9% and 27.2% at Day 1 and Day 7 postpartum). There was a significant reduction in the percentage of mothers categorized in the depressed group from Day 1 to Day 7 postpartum, among those who rendered KMC compared with those who did not (KMC: 7.6%, 2.5%, 0% at Day 1 and 7 postpartum and at the day of discharge vs. No KMC: 7.6% and 10.9% at Day 1 and 7 postpartum). There were no significant differences in the anxiety and depression scores at any period between mothers who rendered KMC > 6 hours and KMC ≤ 6 hours/day.
Conclusion. Anxiety and depression scores significantly decreased over time in both mothers who rendered and did not render KMC to their infants. However, there was a significant reduction in the percentage of mothers categorized as having severe depression over time among those who rendered KMC compared to those who did not. Other factors aside from KMC may affect the maternal anxiety and depression states, such as instability of the infant.