The effect of Citrus aurantium capsule on postpartum depression in women

Document Type : Original Article


1 Instructor, Department of Midwifery, Neyshabur University of Medical Sciences, Neyshabur, Iran.

2 Assistant Professor, Department of Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine, Sabzevar University of Medical Sciences, Sabzevar, Iran.

3 Assistant Professor, Department of Pharmacology, Cellular and Molecular Research Center, Faculty of Medicine, Sabzevar University of Medical Sciences, Sabzevar, Iran.

4 BC of Midwifery, Student Research Committee, Faculty of Medicine, Sabzevar University of Medical Sciences, Sabzevar, Iran.

5 M.Sc. of Epidemiology, Meta-Analysis Research Center, Torbat Heydariyeh University of Medical Sciences, Torbat Heydariyeh, Iran.


Introduction: Postpartum depression is a common public health problem in the first year after birth. Low mood, feeling guilty, loss of appetite, difficulty in falling asleep are some symptoms of this condition. Depression can cause serious problems for the child, mother and family. This study was performed with aim to determine the effect of Citrus aurantium on postpartum depression in women.
Methods: This randomized clinical trial was conducted on 49 mothers referred to the Sabzevar health and treatment centers in 2017. Participants had the score of 14-28 on the Beck Depression Inventory-Second Edition (BDI-II), and their depression was confirmed by a psychiatrist through interview. They were randomly (with random blocking method) assigned to the treatment group (orange blossom 500 mg/Bid+ fluoxetine 20 mg) and control group (fluoxetine 20 mg plus placebo). Treatment was started on week 8 after delivery and continued for 8 weeks. Data were analyzed using SPSS software (version 16) and Kolmogrov-Smirnov, Chi-square, Independent and paired t‑test and Mann–Whitney test. P<0.05 was considered statistically significant.
Results: The mean score of depression after the intervention in Citrus aurantium group was 9.2±4.02 and in control group was 17.12±3.56; there was a significant difference between two groups (p>0,001). Also, after the intervention, 15 women (62.5%) in Citrus aurantium group and 1)4%( in control group were without postpartum depression.
Conclusion: The use of Citrus aurantium along with fluoxetine in the treatment of mild to moderate postpartum depression is more effective than fluoxetine alone. So, it can be used as an alternative in treatment of postpartum depression.


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