Maternal depression, antidepressant prescriptions, and congenital anomaly risk in offspring: a population-based cohort study

  • L Ban, JE Gibson, J West, L Fiaschi, R Sokal, L Smeeth, P Doyle, RB Hubbard, LJ Tata
  • BJOG An International Journal of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, March 2014, Wiley
  • DOI: 10.1111/1471-0528.12682

Antidepressant vs. congenital anomaly in children

What is it about?

We found that children whose mothers were prescribed SSRIs or TCAs were not at increased risk of major congenital anomaly overall, nor were children whose mothers had diagnosed but un-medicated depression. Use of paroxetine in the first trimester was associated with an increased risk of congenital heart anomaly and the absolute excess risk could be up to seven children for every 1000 exposed mothers.

Why is it important?

Women are commonly prescribed antidepressants in early pregnancy, yet the potential side effects of individual types of SSRI drugs on system-specific major congenital anomalies remain unclear. Less is known about the possible effects of tricyclic antidepressants and maternal depression that is not treated with antidepressants.

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The following have contributed to this page: Lu Ban and Dr Linda Fiaschi