The impact of depression and fluoxetine treatment on obstetrical outcome

Arch Womens Ment Health. 2004 Jul;7(3):193-200. doi: 10.1007/s00737-004-0057-5. Epub 2004 Jun 17.


Introduction: This study prospectively followed women over the course of pregnancy to assess the impact of depression and/or antidepressant treatment on obstetrical outcome.

Method: Sixty-four outpatient women with an Axis I diagnosis of major depressive disorder or no psychiatric history were followed in each trimester of pregnancy with administration of the CES-D. A subset of the women with depression received treatment with fluoxetine during pregnancy. Subjects with a CES-D score greater than 16 at any time point were further assessed for the presence of an active major or minor depressive episode. Primary outcome variables included infant gestational age, birth weight, Apgar score, and admission to the neonatal intensive care unit.

Results: Analyzable data were available for 62 women. No significant differences were found in outcome variables between those women with exposure to medication and/or prenatal depressed mood and those women without a history of depression.

Conclusions: In contrast to other studies, our study did not demonstrate an adverse effect of fluoxetine exposure per se on obstetrical outcome. In addition, we did not find a significant impact of depression during pregnancy on obstetrical outcome.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antidepressive Agents, Second-Generation / therapeutic use*
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Confidence Intervals
  • Depressive Disorder / drug therapy*
  • Depressive Disorder / psychology
  • Female
  • Fluoxetine / therapeutic use*
  • Humans
  • Maternal Welfare
  • Middle Aged
  • Odds Ratio
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications / drug therapy*
  • Pregnancy Complications / psychology
  • Pregnancy Outcome*
  • Prenatal Care* / methods
  • Prospective Studies
  • Time Factors


  • Antidepressive Agents, Second-Generation
  • Fluoxetine