Award Date


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

First Committee Member

Douglas Ferraro

Number of Pages



Approximately 80% of all women experience considerable mood lability in the days and weeks following parturition. Many researchers have attempted and failed to link postpartal mood changes to reproductive hormones and very little research examines perinatal cognitive ability. The goal of this research was to elucidate the pattern of cognitive and affective behaviors associated with the elevated hormones of pregnancy and the diminished hormones following parturition. The present study compared salivary progesterone, dehydroxyepiandrosterone (DHEAS), estrone, estradiol, estriol and testosterone with the results from a battery of neuropsychiatric assessments administered to thirty-two healthy, primigravid women at 37 weeks of pregnancy and within the first 10 days postpartum. Results from this study indicate that cognitive performance is impaired across multiple domains both during pregnancy and following parturition. Moreover, perinatal mood is adversely related to diminished late pregnancy testosterone levels followed by postpartal increases in DHEAS.


Affective; Cognitive; Correlates; Hormones; Reproductive

Controlled Subject

Clinical psychology; Women's studies

File Format


File Size

3.80 MB

Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




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