Department of Anesthesiology

Research Participation Opportunities

Impact of Labor Pain and Pain Management on Postpartum Depression and Psychosocial Health 

Are you interested in participating in women’s health research? Researchers at the University of Pittsburgh are currently inviting pregnant women in their 3rd trimester and their future infants to participate in research studies involving data collection on labor discomfort and depression. These studies do not involve the use of any experimental medication. Eligible participants can be paid up to $100-260 after completion of all study procedures.

Please call the study team at 412-641-2179, Monday – Friday, 9AM-5PM for more information.

Why are we doing this research?

This research is being done to understand the relationship between pain, pain relief, and postpartum depression in women, and to determine the potential effects of these factors on infant development.

Who is eligible to participate?

You may be eligible to participate if you are:

  • Pregnant for the first time
  • Age ≥18
  • Planning to utilize labor epidural analgesia (an “epidural”) for pain control
  • Anticipating a term vaginal delivery, either spontaneous or induced, at ≥37 weeks
  • Not planning to list your infant for adoption
  • Willing to answer questions about your baby within the first 3 months of life

What are the study procedures?

If you are eligible and agreeable to participating in one or both of these studies, the procedures will be as follows.

Consent to Participation/Initial Encounter (45 minutes)

  • Questionnaires, including questions about mood, personality, pain attitudes, and baseline pain
  • Saliva sample collection
  • Pain testing – appointment at your convenience at Magee-Women’s Anesthesia Research (Oakland)

Second Encounter: Labor and Delivery (variable time)

  • An electronic device will be placed at your bedside, which you will use to answer 3-4 short questions about your comfort or discomfort every hour. The total amount of time you will spend answering these questions is approximately 10 minutes, depending on how long your labor will be

Third Encounter: 1-2 Days after Delivery (10 minutes)

  • We will ask you to complete 3 questionnaires that ask you about your pain levels, how the pain may be interfering with your activity, your mood, if you are breastfeeding, and other similar questions.

Fourth Encounter: 6 Weeks after Delivery (30 minutes)

  • We will ask you to complete 5 questionnaires, some of which will be the same as you had previously completed, and others asking some questions about your attachment with your baby, your mood, and your child’s development. 

Final Encounter: 3 Months after Delivery (30 minutes)

  • We will ask you to complete the same 5 questionnaires pertaining to your mood, attachment with your baby, and your child’s development. 

Will I be paid if I take part in this research study?

Monetary payment is offered to you at each stage of your participation. You are eligible to receive up to $100-260 after full participation in all study visit encounters, paid in stages for the work that you perform for this research.