Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Medicine (MMed)

First Supervisor/Advisor

Dr. Abraham Mukaindo

Second Supervisor/Advisor

Dr. Alphonce Nabiswa


Obstetrics and Gynaecology (East Africa)


Introduction: Gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) and its treatment have a marked effect on women’s lives consequently aggravating psychosocial disruptions of a normal pregnancy. The demand for behavioural adaptation as well as postulated biological interactions are likely to increase the risk of maternal depression in GDM patients. There is however inadequate literature concerning the relationship between GDM and depression.

Objective: To compare the proportion of women with GDM who screen positive for depression and the proportion of women without GDM who screen positive for depression at the Aga Khan University Hospital, Nairobi. Socio-demographic factors associated with a positive depression screen were explored.

Methods: This was a case control study, applying the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) and a socio-demographic tool on two antenatal groups; women with GDM and women without GDM. The proportion of women with depression was determined as the percentage of pregnant women with domain and overall scores below the cut-off levels that is 13. The Chi-square test and Fisher’s exact test were used to test for statistically significant differences in the proportion of GDM and non GDM women who screened positive for depression. Secondary analysis was done using univariate and multivariate analysis to examine the relationship between gestational diabetes, mode of treatment, and selected socio-demographic characteristics and a positive depression screen.

Results:A total of 315 pregnant participants were enlisted for the study (104 with GDM and 211 without GDM). The two study groups were comparable demographically except for maternal age, parity, BMI, ethnicity, mode of conception and alcohol intake (p

Conclusion: Women with GDM are significantly more likely to screen positive for depression in pregnancy compared to women without GDM. Screening for depression as well as psycological support may be required in women diagnosed with GDM.