The clinical content of preconception care: women with psychiatric conditions

Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2008 Dec;199(6 Suppl 2):S328-32. doi: 10.1016/j.ajog.2008.09.001.


For a substantial proportion of women, pregnancy can be complicated by the occurrence or reoccurrence of a psychiatric condition. Psychiatric disorders during pregnancy are associated with poor obstetric outcomes, higher risk of postpartum psychiatric illness, increased rates of substance abuse, lower participation in prenatal care, and adverse infant and family outcomes. As part of preconception care, providers should be vigilant and screen for psychiatric disorders among women of reproductive age, as the detection and appropriate management of these conditions can reduce the occurrence of adverse pregnancy and family outcomes. This manuscript reviews the treatment options and the risks and benefits of discontinuing, changing, or continuing psychotropic medications for women of reproductive age with common psychiatric disorders (depression and anxiety disorders, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia) and offers recommendations for preconception care.

MeSH terms

  • Anxiety Disorders / drug therapy
  • Bipolar Disorder / drug therapy
  • Depressive Disorder / drug therapy
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Maternal Welfare*
  • Mental Disorders / drug therapy*
  • Preconception Care*
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications / drug therapy*
  • Schizophrenia / drug therapy