Friday, March 10, 2006

Infants Withdrawal From SSRI's

In a new study in the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescence Medicine, concerns for regnant women taking Serotonin Re uptake Inhibitors (SSRI's) was addressed. those who too SSRI's while pregnant had babies that showed signs of withdrawal shortly after birth. It states that one third of 60 newborns whose mother's took antidepressants during pregnancy had neonatal abstinence syndromes. This is a type of withdrawal with symptoms that include high-pitched crying, tremors and disturbed sleep. Infants born with this syndrome should be monitored closely for at least 48 hours.
One fourth of women develop depression at some time in their life. The added stress of pregnancy can make matters worse and may increase the need for medication. SSRI's are the most common class of antidepressants used, but they can cross the placenta barrier and affect the fetus.
Researchers examined 120 babies born over a two year period at the Rabin Medical Center in Israel. 60 had been exposed to SSRI's and monitored for two hours after birth and at regular intervals thereafter. They found that 30 percent had neonatal abstinence syndrome. Symptoms included tremors, gastrointestinal problems, hypertonicity, which is an abnormal increase in uscle tone, sleep disturbances and high pitched cries. They also noted that eight of these babies had severe cases of symptoms. Fortunately none of the babies required treatment.
This study concerned it's authors who said that family physicians, psychiatrists and gynecologists should be more aware of this problem. And the risk to benefit ratio of SSRI treatment should be assessed. They also recommend prescribing the most minimum dose that would be effective for the mom's condition.

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