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J Psychopharmacol. 2014 Jan;28(1):55-61. doi: 10.1177/0269881113515061. Epub 2013 Dec 10.

Psychiatric profiles of mothers who take Ecstasy/MDMA during pregnancy: reduced depression 1 year after giving birth and quitting Ecstasy.

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1
1University of East London, London, UK.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The recreational drug MDMA (3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine) or 'Ecstasy' is associated with heightened psychiatric distress and feelings of depression. The Drugs and Infancy Study (DAISY) monitored the psychiatric symptom profiles of mothers who used Ecstasy/MDMA while pregnant, and followed them over the first year post-partum.

METHODS:

We compared 28 young women whom took MDMA during their pregnancy with a polydrug control group of 68 women who took other psychoactive drugs while pregnant. The Brief Symptom Inventory (BSI) was completed for several periods: The first trimester of pregnancy; and 1, 4 and 12 months after childbirth. Recreational drug use was monitored at each time point.

RESULTS:

During the first trimester of pregnancy, MDMA-using mothers reported higher depression scores than the polydrug controls. At 1 year after childbirth, their BSI depression scores were significantly lower, now closer to the control group values. At the same time point, their self-reported use of MDMA became nearly zero, in contrast to their continued use of Cannabis/marijuana, nicotine and alcohol. We found significant symptom reductions in those with BSI obsessive-compulsive and interpersonal sensitivity, following Ecstasy/MDMA cessation.

CONCLUSIONS:

The findings from this unique prospective study of young recreational drug-using mothers are consistent with previous reports of improved psychiatric health after quitting MDMA.

KEYWORDS:

Cessation; Ecstasy; MDMA; depression; drug addiction; middle class; mother; post-partum; pregnancy; quitting; recreational drugs

PMID:
24327452
PMCID:
PMC5111163
DOI:
10.1177/0269881113515061
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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