maternal mortality | St. Louis Public Radio

maternal mortality

According to the new study, a woman's weight before her first pregnancy may have long-term effects.
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases | National Institutes of Health

Intense stress faced by new moms can also affect the emotional development of their baby. That's a good reason to expand Medicaid coverage to low-income mothers, a St. Louis child psychiatrist argued Tuesday.

“If you want to have healthy infants, you have to have healthy caregivers,” Dr. Cynthia Rogers told an assembly of physicians at Washington University. “And the preterm brain is particularly vulnerable.”

Dr. Matthew Broom, Kim Martino Sexton and Rena Ciolek joined St. Louis on the Air to discuss postpartum depression.
Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis on the Air

Research by the Centers for Disease Control finds that one in nine women experience postpartum depression, a depression that occurs after having a baby. Some postpartum depression experiences last longer and are felt in different ways than others.

Dr. Matthew Broom, SLUCare pediatrician at SSM Cardinal Glennon Children's Hospital said that anywhere between 15 and 30 percent of women experience some sort of postpartum depression.

Dr. Shilpa Babbar, an OB-GYN physician for SLUCare in St. Louis County.
Durrie Bouscaren | St. Louis Public Radio.

Twice as many United States women are dying in childbirth today as in 1990, even though all other wealthy nations have seen declines in maternal mortality rates.

Rising rates of obesity and women having children later in life may help explain the rising number of deaths, said Dr. Shilpa Babbar, who specializes in high-risk pregnancies at SSM Health St. Mary’s Hospital in St. Louis County.