Couvade Syndrome - Custom, Behavior or Disease?
Front Neurol Neurosci. 2018;42:51-58
Authors: Piechowski-Jozwiak B, Bogousslavsky J
The custom of Couvade and Couvade syndrome is a phenomenon observed since ancient times. Whether it constitutes a disease entity or it should be considered a ritual or custom remains a matter of debate. Historical transcripts shed light into the distinct origins and inclinations of couvade behaviors, some of them having religious inclinations. Currently, there are several views on this phenomenon including medical, psychoanalytic, and psychological. Some explain this syndrome as part of men's preparation and participation in pregnancy and post-partum period. Others see it as men rivalling with women for procreative ability or ability to carry an unborn child in the womb. There are a set of criteria that can be used in diagnosing Couvade syndrome, which may be helpful in standardizing clinical detection and management of patients. It is important to embed this syndrome in contemporary society to understand the complexity of male involvement in pregnancy and fatherhood, which at the end may not be a disease. In this review, the authors will guide the reader through history, possible etiologies, and clinical aspects of Couvade syndrome.
PMID: 29151091 [PubMed - in process]