Predicting Need for Follow-Up Due to Severe Anxiety and Depression Symptoms After Perinatal Loss

Marianne H. Hutti, John A. Myers, Lynne A. Hall, Barbara J. Polivka, Susan White, Janice Hill, Meredith Grisanti, Jaclyn Hayden, Elizabeth Kloenne

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Objective: To evaluate the ability of the Perinatal Grief Intensity Scale (PGIS) when used within 8 weeks of perinatal loss to predict intense anxiety and severe depression symptoms in women 3 months later (Time 2 [T2]). Design: Prospective survey. Setting: Participants were recruited from hospitals in Louisville, KY and via the Internet. Participants: Women (N = 103) who experienced perinatal loss. Methods: Data were collected using the PGIS, Beck Anxiety Inventory, and the Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale. We used logistic regression, odds ratios, and receiver operating characteristic curve analysis. Results: The PGIS had 97.9% sensitivity and 29.6% specificity to predict severe depression symptoms and 95.2% sensitivity and 56.2% specificity to predict intense anxiety at T2. A baseline PGIS score greater than or equal to 3.53 predicted severe depression symptoms (odds ratio = 1.82, 95% confidence interval [CI] [1.46, 2.18], p =.014) and intense anxiety (odds ratio = 1.43, 95% CI [1.07, 1.82], p =.029) at T2. The receiver operating characteristic curves of the PGIS suggest the PGIS performs well at predicting (screening positive) for severe depression symptoms (area under the curve = 0.86, 95% CI [0.79, 0.94], p <.001) and intense anxiety (area under the curve = 0.86, 95% CI [0.78, 0.93], p <.001) after perinatal loss. Conclusion: The PGIS accurately predicted intense anxiety and severe depression symptoms 3 to 5 months after perinatal loss. This instrument may help health care providers identify women who need further mental health evaluation after perinatal loss.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)125-136
Number of pages12
JournalJOGNN - Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic, and Neonatal Nursing
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 AWHONN, the Association of Women's Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses


  • Perinatal Grief Screening Instrument
  • miscarriage
  • neonatal death
  • stillbirth

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics
  • Critical Care
  • Maternity and Midwifery


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