Tuesday, August 10, 2004

CTV.ca | Anti-depressants may put unborn babies at risk
CTV.ca News Staff
"Women who take some anti-depressant drugs late during their pregnancies may be putting their babies at risk, Health Canada is warning. The department issued an advisory Monday about the Selective Serotonin Re-uptake Inhibitors (SSRIs) anti-depressants. The drugs include: bupropion (Zyban, whether used for depression or for smoking cessation); fluoxetine (Prozac); paroxetine (Paxil); citalopram (Celexa); venlafaxine (Effexor); fluvoxamine (Luvox); mirtazapine; and sertraline. Pregnant women should consult their doctor but should not discontinue the drugs abruptly, since this can also lead to intense side effects. 'Untreated depression in moms can be very dangerous -- more suicide ideas, more suicide attempts, more post-partum depression,' said Dr. Gideon Koren....Health Canada says newborns may be adversely affected when pregnant women take the drugs during the third trimester of pregnancy. The babies can develop complications at birth requiring prolonged hospitalization, breathing support and tube feeding...."