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Study: Antidepressants Don’t Cause Stillbirths


S.S.R.I.’s have been linked to various problems during pregnancy and after birth. At one time, the medical community considered that antidepressant use might be linked to an increased risk of stillbirths or infant mortality rates.

However, new findings from a Swedish study reveal that a pregnant woman using antidepressants—such as Prozac or S.S.R.I.’s (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors)—isn’t putting an unborn baby at risk.

Researchers at the Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, examined approximately 1.6 million singleton births in the countries of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden, and found that neonatal death rate (before one month of life) in babies of the 29,228 mothers in the group who were taking S.S.R.I.’s while pregnant were not higher compared to mothers not taking antidepressants. In fact, even though researchers linked women who’d been hospitalization for depression and other psychiatric illness to an increased rate in stillbirths and deaths under 1-year of age, increase mortality rates had little to do with using S.S.R.I.’s.

“Severe depression and other psychiatric illnesses during pregnancy are not healthy for the mother or the baby,” says Dr. Olof Stephansson, Associate Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Karolinska Institute in Stockholm. “[However], the risks [due to the drugs] are modest and not treating these diseases is worse than using these drugs.”

Source: NY Times

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