Another study that was published in the Oct. 31 online edition of Human Reproduction is suggesting that women taking antidepressants like Paxil are at risk of harming their babies when they take the pills while pregnant. While these data are not new, they do provide women and their doctors with more proof of antidepressant links to miscarriages and babies being born with serious birth defects.
This new study was conducted on popular antidepressant medications including SSRIs like Paxil, Prozac and Zoloft. The study is showing that women who take the drugs are at higher risk of having pregnancy complications like preeclampsia, miscarriages and premature birth of their babies. The babies themselves are at risk of suffering from birth defects including oral clefts, neural tube defects, spina bifida and heart, lung and brain defects. The babies are also more likely to develop autism later in their lives.
“There is clear and concerning evidence of risk when pregnant women use these medications,” said Dr. Adam Urato, senior author.
He also said that taking the antidepressants hasn’t been proven to even be effective in treating the depression, anyway. In fact, many experts agree that antidepressant medications like Paxil offer more harm than good when used to treat depression. Aside from the birth defects linked to the pills, Paxil has also been proven to cause violent and suicidal thoughts and behaviors in many patients.
Of course, not everyone agrees with this assessment. Dr. Beatriz Currier, associate professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, says that there isn’t any “blanket recommendation as to how best to treat depression during pregnancy and that every woman who presents to a clinician has to undergo a case-by-case analysis of the benefits and risks of antidepressant therapy.”
Currier also claims that there is not any conclusive information as to who is more likely to be at a higher risk of suffering from a miscarriage when taking drugs like Paxil during pregnancy.