University of Arizona College of Medicine, Tucson, Arizona

Depression and anxiety disorders are more common in women than in men and female reproductive hormones as well as psychosocial factors are likely involved. The courses of these disorders are often different in women as well and may be related to different reproductive events across the life span. Women often suffer worsening of their symptoms premenstrually, during pregnancy or the postpartum and during perimenopause when hormone levels can be in varying degrees of flux.

The Woman's Mental Health Program was initiated to improve detection of mental illness in women, to provide clinical care that is informed to the specific needs of women, to conduct research in areas of importance to the mental health of women and to provide training to medical students and residents about the mental health needs of women.

Our program currently focuses on preconception and pregnancy planning for women using psychiatric medications, depression and anxiety during pregnancy, postpartum depression and postpartum onset anxiety disorders, perimenopausal depression, premenstrual dysphoric disorder and bipolar disorder in women.