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Ned Tijdschr Geneeskd. 2007 Dec 29;151(52):2873-4.

[Use of SSRIs during pregnancy and possible consequences for the development of the child].

[Article in Dutch]

Author information

  • 1Wilhelmina Ziekenhuis Assen, Afd. Kindergeneeskunde, Postbus 30.001, 9400 RA Assen.


Infants of depressed mothers are at increased risk for developing cognitive and behavioural problems. Medication is often prescribed for pregnant women suffering from a major depression. Approximately 2% of Dutch pregnant women is using a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI). SSRIs cross the placenta easily. The consequences of prenatal exposure to SSRIs for the developing child remain to be determined. In the postnatal period, increased incidence of respiratory distress, feeding and digestive disturbances, irritability and convulsions, and admission to a neonatal intensive care unit have been described. Long-term effects have not yet been thoroughly examined in humans. Animal studies have shown permanent changes in specific parts of the brain and altered behaviour in adulthood after perinatal exposure to SSRIs. Research into motor and cognitive development at school age and adolescence in children prenatally exposed to SSRIs is urgently needed.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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