Long-term influences of parental divorce on offspring affective disorders: a systematic review and meta-analysis

Sands, Amy, Thompson, Ellen J and Gaysina, Darya (2017) Long-term influences of parental divorce on offspring affective disorders: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Journal of Affective Disorders, 218. pp. 105-114. ISSN 0165-0327

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Abstract

Background: The prevalence of divorce in Western countries has increased in recent decades. However, there is no recent systematic review and/or meta-analysis of studies testing for long-term effects of parental divorce on offspring affective disorders. The present study conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of studies published since 1980 testing for the association between parental divorce and offspring depression and anxiety in adulthood.

Method: PUBMED, Science Direct, Medline, PsychInfo, and PsychArticles databases were searched for eligible studies. Random-effect meta-analyses were used to synthesize effect sizes and to test whether associations of parental divorce with offspring affective disorders differed among three publication periods (i.e., before 1996, 1996–2005, 2006–2015).

Results: In total, 29 studies were eligible for the systematic review, and 18 studies were included in the meta-analyses (depression: n=21,581; anxiety: n=2472). There was significant association between parental divorce and offspring depression (OR=1.56; 95%CI [1.31, 1.86]), but not anxiety (OR=1.16; 95%CI [0.98, 1.38]). The effect of parental divorce on offspring depression was not weaker in the reports published in more recent decades.

Limitations: There is limited research in relation to offspring anxiety in adulthood.

Conclusions: Parental divorce is associated with an increased risk of adult offspring depression, with no indication of the effect being weaker in recent publications.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Psychology > Psychology
Depositing User: Ellena Adams
Date Deposited: 12 May 2017 12:02
Last Modified: 12 May 2017 12:06
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/68079

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