Use of antidepressant medications during pregnancy: a multisite study

Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2008 Feb;198(2):194.e1-5. doi: 10.1016/j.ajog.2007.07.036. Epub 2007 Oct 1.

Abstract

Objective: This study was undertaken to provide information on the prevalence of use of antidepressant drugs among pregnant women in the United States.

Study design: A retrospective study was conducted using the automated databases of 7 health plans. Women who delivered an infant in a hospital were identified. Antidepressant drug use was evaluated assuming a gestational duration of 270 days.

Results: Among the 118,935 deliveries occurring from 2001-2005, 6.6% of women were dispensed an antidepressant during pregnancy. Antidepressant drug use increased from 2.0% in 1996 to 7.6% of deliveries in 2004 and 2005. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor use increased from 1.5% in 1996 to 6.4% in 2004 and 6.2% in 2005.

Conclusion: Our finding that nearly 8% of pregnant women were prescribed antidepressants drugs during the years 2004 and 2005 highlights the importance of understanding the effects of these medications on the developing fetus and on the pregnant woman.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Antidepressive Agents / administration & dosage
  • Antidepressive Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Databases, Factual
  • Depressive Disorder / drug therapy*
  • Depressive Disorder / epidemiology
  • Drug Utilization Review*
  • Female
  • Health Maintenance Organizations
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Middle Aged
  • Practice Patterns, Physicians' / statistics & numerical data*
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications / drug therapy*
  • Pregnancy Complications / epidemiology
  • Prenatal Care
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Serotonin Uptake Inhibitors / administration & dosage
  • Serotonin Uptake Inhibitors / therapeutic use*
  • United States / epidemiology

Substances

  • Antidepressive Agents
  • Serotonin Uptake Inhibitors