SSRIs during pregnancy linked to newborn seizures
Babies born to mothers who used antidepressants during their pregnancy are more likely to be born premature or suffer a seizure shortly after birth, according to a new study published in the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology.
The new study backs up concerns raised by previous studies that antidepressant use among pregnant women is dangerous to developing fetuses despite what drug companies claim on their safety labels.
The new study found that among nearly 229,000 babies born in Tennessee, those born to women who used antidepressants during their second trimester were more likely to be born an average of four to five days earlier than infants who were not exposed to antidepressants in utero.
Infants who were born to mothers taking a specific kind of antidepressant known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, or SSRIs, during their third trimester were also more likely to have a seizure shortly after birth. SSRIs are one of the most prescribed medications in the United States and include the brand names Paxil (paroxetine), Zoloft (sertraline), Celexa (citalopram), and Prozac (fluoxetine).
Several studies have confirmed that SSRI use during pregnancy can cause a host of problems for infants, including an increased risk for birth defects, autism and learning disabilities. The drugs also increase the risk for high blood pressure in pregnant women, which can be life threatening for both the mother and her unborn baby.
Researchers believe this may be the first study that looked at seizure risk with SSRI use, and that more studies are necessary to confirm the risks.
Source: Fox News