An article in Early Human Development (February, 2013) by M.V. Smith et al. titled “Neurobehavioral assessment of infants born at term and in utero exposure to serotonin reuptake inhibitors.”, from The Yale School of Medicine delves further into the link between prenatal SSRI exposure and adverse birth outcomes. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor drugs (SSRIs) are psychiatric medications that work to regulate serotonin concentrations in the brain, serotonin being a neurotransmitter that plays a key role in mood, appetite, sleep, and prenatal development.
Smith et al. (2013) write “Some studies report neurobehavioral symptoms in neonates exposed to serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SRIs) in utero. However, maternal psychiatric illness during the last trimester of pregnancy, as a confounding factor, has not always been assessed.” Accordingly, the aims of this present study were to compare “neurobehavioral complications among neonates who were born to euthymic women who either took or did not take an SRI during the last trimester of pregnancy.”
Subjects included in this small study were “67 infants (61 controls and 6 exposed to SRIs).” The team found that “Infants exposed to SRIs in the third trimester had poorer motor development, lower 5-minute APGAR scores, and shorter mean gestational age as compared to unexposed infants.” For clarity, APGAR score is a measure of neonatal adaptation (to life outside the womb), and higher scores indicate better adaptation.
“Results of this study show differences in autonomic and gross motor activity between neonates who were or were not exposed to SRIs in utero after controlling for active maternal psychiatric illness.” Because of studies like this, SSRI birth defect lawsuits have been filed in great number.
If you or a loved one used SSRIs and gave birth to a child with a congenital malformation or who had perinatal complications, you may be entitled to significant financial compensation. For a free, no-obligation case consultation, contact our team of SSRI birth defect lawyers at the information provided below. We have the experience, resources, and skills required to win the justice you deserve. Call today and see how we can help.
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Our SSRI Birth Defects Lawsuit Information page is a great place to start if you have any questions about SSRIs and Birth Defects.