RL David, from the Center for Health Studies, Group Health Cooperative, in Seattle, WA, conducted a study called “Risks of Congenital Malformations and Perinatal Events Amoung Infants Exposed to Antidepressant Medications During Pregnancy”. The purpose of this study was to determine the risks involved with perinatal complications and congenital defects among offspring exposed to antidepressants during development. 2,201women who were given antidepressant medication during pregnancy and gave birth to a child were identified. Inpatient and outpatient diagnoses were obtained from automated databases. There were two categories in this study, tricylic antidepressants and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs).
David states “Rates of congenital anomalies or perinatal complications were compared to infants whose mothers were not prescribed antidepressants during pregnancy.” Perinatal refers to the time around child birth. Results obtained from this study showed a significant increase in preterm delivery risk for children exposed to SSRIs or TCAs during pregnancy. During the third trimester of full term infants exposed to SSRIs, there was an increased risk for temperature regulation disorders, hypoglycemia, endocrine and metabolic issues, and respiratory distress syndrome.
It was noted that the 182 infants exposed to Paroxetine did not have an increased risk of cardiac septal defects. Author David RL, Further explains “SSRIs and TCAs did not show a consistent link with congenital anomalies. Paroxetine exposure was not linked with an increased risk for cardiovascular anomalies, although our study power to detect a moderate increase in risk was limited. While a connection was found between infants exposed to these antidepressants and preterm delivery, there was not a clear connection with these drugs and major congenital malformations.
While this study does not highlight all dangers of Paxil during pregnancy, it concludes that Paxil use is associated with an increased rate of preterm delivery, something many similar studies have found. Other studies, peer-reviewed and published in prominent international medical journals, have found strong associations between maternal Paxil use and a wide range of congenital malformations.
Due to the publications of so many research articles showing the danger of Paxil, a number of Paxil birth defects lawsuits have been filed.