(HealthDay News) — Women who take certain antidepressants while pregnant do not raise the risk of a stillbirth or death of their baby in the first year of life, according to a large new study.
The findings stem from an analysis of birth outcomes in Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden that included about 1.6 million babies born between 1996 and 2007. Close to 2 percent of the infants’ mothers — about 30,000 women — took prescription selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), such as Prozac (fluoxetine) and Paxil (paroxetine), for depressive symptoms during their pregnancy.
via Prenatal Antidepressants Don’t Raise Fetal, Infant Death Risk: Study.
THE QUESTION How might an unborn child’s development be affected if the mother takes antidepressants during pregnancy?
THIS STUDY involved 7,696 pregnant women, most of them 27 to 30 years old. Of the 669 women in the group who had symptoms of depression, 570 women took no antidepressants, and 99 took selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI) antidepressants. During pregnancy, those in the SSRI group had fewer depressive symptoms than the other 570 women. All participants in the study had periodic sonograms to measure fetal growth, including body weight and head size, which is considered an indicator of brain development. Among the women with untreated depression, fetal growth overall was slower compared with the fetuses of all other study participants. Among women who took SSRIs, fetal weight gain was not different but head sizes were the smallest, on average; their babies also were twice as likely to be born prematurely. No link was found between symptoms of depression and below-normal birth weight.
via Untreated depression and antidepressants may both affect unborn child – The Washington Post.
(HealthDay News) — Major depression and conflicts with intimate partners increase the risk of suicide among pregnant women and new mothers, a new study indicates.
“We have a more complete picture now of who these women are and what led up to these tragic events,” study author Dr. Katherine Gold, an assistant professor of family medicine at the University of Michigan Medical School, said in a university news release. “These deaths ripple through families and communities and cause a lot of sorrow and devastation.”
She and her colleagues analyzed 2,083 suicides among women aged 15 to 54 that were recorded over five years in the U.S. National Violent Death Reporting System.
via Depression, Partner Conflict Raise Suicide Risk for Pregnant Women, New Moms.
(HealthDay News) — Children of women who experience anxiety and depression during pregnancy may be at greater risk for asthma, according to new research.
The study of 279 inner-city black and Hispanic women adds weight to research previously conducted among white families that found children are particularly susceptible to asthma-related risks during the prenatal period.
The findings are published in the July issue of Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology.
via Anxiety, Depression in Pregnancy May Raise Kids’ Asthma Risk.
(HealthDay News) — Pregnant women with depression receive inconsistent treatment and, as a result, may spend more time in the hospital before their babies are born, a new study finds.
Researchers followed 20 health care providers at six Michigan clinics and found a lack of uniformity in treating pregnant women with depression. Often, health care providers felt burdened by the responsibility of needing to make instant decisions about issues, and there was great variation in those decisions — even within the same clinic.
via Study Finds ‘Inconsistent’ Care for Pregnant Women With Depression.