Previous studies have reported that antidepressant medications (SSRIs) taken during pregnancy may lead to autism spectrum disorder in exposed offspring. Larger studies published April 18, 2017 in The Journal of the American Medical Association show that the use of SSRI medications during pregnancy are not associated with autism spectrum disorder but genetic factors, familial environmental factors or both may be responsible in susceptible people.
Women affected by depression and pregnant often find themselves pulled between concern for risks for the pregnancy vs their mental welfare. Antidepressants and pregnancy deliver a double-edge sword. What is an expectant mother to do? Given the discrepancy of findings, concern for transient neonatal issues vs a significant increase in depression and post-partum depression, the answer may not be clear. Each case must be individualized taking into account both medical and psychiatric histories.
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