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Curtin University
Collaboration for Evidence, Research and Impact in Public Health

Breastfeeding and Postnatal Depression in Sabah Malaysia (2009-2011)


Chief Investigators:

Project Manager/PhD Candidate:


  • Australian Postgraduate Award Scholarship - Curtin University

Project Overview

This is a prospective study which will use a cohort of 2000 mother-infant pairs to determine the factors associated with breastfeeding and postnatal depression in Malaysia. A random sample will be recruited from mothers who attend the Maternal and Child Health Clinics in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah at the 36 weeks antenatal visit (first interview) and follow-up will be done at 1 month (second interview), 3 months (third interview) and 6 months (fourth interview) postpartum.

All respondents will be asked to give informed consent prior to recruitment. The questionnaires will include two scales, Iowa Infant Feeding Attitude Scale (IIFAS) and Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS). The IIFAS and EPDS are standard questionnaires which have been used and the EPDS has been previously validated in Malaysia. Additional questions on demographic, information on risk factors, infant feeding variables and socio-cultural practices will be used from previous studies. All translations will be done by experts and back-translation will be conducted to ensure accuracy. The questionnaires will then be tested for cultural understanding in focus groups. 

The researchers will train 2 enumerators who will help in the data collection.  Protocols for data collection will be developed and piloted to avoid measurement bias and ensure comparability of data collected from different subjects. Data obtained will be analysed using the SPSS to answer the objectives of the study.