- Oral contraceptive use was associated with increased concurrent depressive symptom scores in 16-year-old girls compared with nonusers.
- Most common depressive symptoms included crying, hypersomnia, and eating problems.
Why this matters
- Prior studies found that oral contraceptive use during adolescence was associated with an increased risk for depressive symptoms later in life, but the association with concurrent depressive symptoms was unknown.
- Cohort study of adolescents (743-903 girls) followed up for 9 years; data from prospective cohort study, TRAILS.
- Depressive symptoms were measured using the DSM-IV-oriented affective problems scale of the Youth Self-Report.
- Funding: None disclosed.
- At 16 years of age, oral contraceptive pill (OCP) users vs nonusers had higher concurrent depressive symptom scores (mean score, 0.40 vs 0.33; β coefficient, 0.075; P<.001>
- Common symptoms in users vs nonusers were:
- crying (OR, 1.89; P<.001>
- eating problems (OR, 1.54; P=.009), and
- hypersomnia (OR, 1.68; P=.006).
- Limited generalizability of findings.
Coauthored with Chitra Ravi, MPharm