A new review has just come out and has found evidence that taking an antidepressant (especially in the 3rd trimester) increases a woman’s risk of given birth prematurely:
A summary (and link to original study in the article) can be found here: http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/04/07/antidepressants-linked-to-premature-births/
If you are on antidepressants, please don’t stop them because of this and be sure to talk to your provider first!
This study admits a few of the studies they reviewed did not control for factors like smoking, maternal diet, etc – all things we KNOW affect preterm birth and in severely depressed women often play a role.
I think this last paragraph from the study is very important in showing that we still don’t know exactly how much we should be worried when it comes to these medications in pregnancy:
“[T]he findings from our review of the literature are consistent with an association between antidepressant use during pregnancy and preterm birth, although the possibility of residual confounding by depression severity cannot be completely ruled out based on the available evidence. Counseling of pregnant women must take into consideration the clinical circumstances of a given patient, the strength of the available evidence on the risks and benefits…, and alternatives to medication use during pregnancy. While our study findings cannot prove causality, they reinforce the notion that antidepressants should not be used by pregnant women in the absence of a clear need that cannot be met through alternative approaches.”