Mend Physical Therapy Blog and Injury Information

Low Back Pain and Postpartum Depression

December 31, 2020


Low Back Pain and Postpartum Depression

By Berrin Boyce, PT, DPT, PRPC

Low back pain, pelvic girdle pain, and postpartum depression are relatively common following pregnancy. Musculoskeletal pain likely impacts around 50% of people in the postpartum period (Carvalho et al, 2016), while 1 in 7 women will experience postpartum depression. Although both are common, both have specific treatment options (including exercise) to help reduce or eliminate symptoms.

In a study by Gutke et al. 2007, the authors looked at 267 participants at 3 months postpartum with and without lumbopelvic pain. The participants were screened for postpartum depression using the Edinburgh Postpartum Depression Scale. According to the study, postpartum depression (PPD) symptoms were 3 times more likely in women who experience lumbopelvic pain during the postpartum period. This is important to note for clinicians who work with this population as well as women to know they are not alone, that there is help available, and if back pain is present it is important to be aware of signs of PPD and to seek assistance when needed.

Click here to schedule an appointment to address low back or pelvic girdle pain with a physical therapist at MEND today.