The relationship between hormone levels, plasma catecholamines, and mood disturbances has been investigated in 44 patients during days 2 to 5 of the immediate post-partum period. Fifty-two per cent of the mothers showed periods of emotional lability although there was no significant correlation between plasma concentrations of FSH, prolactin, oestrone, oestradiol, cortisol, or progesterone and the incidence of post-partum blues. In contrast there was a significant reduction of circulating catecholamines which correlated with mood disturbances. Women who experienced only a single day of post-partum blues had significantly lower levels of noradrenaline and adrenaline on that day compared with preceding or subsequent days.
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