Zoloft In The 3rd Trimester
Women who use Zoloft or similar antidepressants during the third trimester of pregnancy are six times more likely to give birth to a child with a circulatory condition known as persistent pulmonary hypertension of the newborn (PPHN), according to a New England Journal of Medicine study. Researchers stated that the use of antidepressants such as Zoloft late in pregnancy could also increase the risk of other respiratory problems.
In the study, researchers examined the risk of PPHN before and after the 20th week of pregnancy for women who used Zoloft or similar antidepressants known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). The researchers also examined the risk of PPHN before and after the 20th week of pregnancy for women who did not take antidepressant medications while pregnant and for those who were taking other types of antidepressants.
According the study’s findings, women who used any antidepressant after the 20th week of pregnancy were three times more likely to give birth to a child with PPHN than those who did not take antidepressants. Compared to women who used antidepressants before the 20th week of pregnancy, late pregnancy antidepressant users were five times more likely to give birth to a child with PPHN.
When the results of the study were restricted only to Zoloft and other SSRIs, the results were even more striking. Women who used SSRIs like Zoloft after 20 weeks of pregnancy were six times more likely to give birth to a child with PPHN than non-users. Women who used SSRIs late in their pregnancy were more than 20 times more likely to have a baby with PPHN than those who used the drugs before the 20th week they were pregnant.
Taken together, the study’s finding provided strong evidence that taking Zoloft or other SSRIs during the third trimester of pregnancy could increase the dangers of PPHN. Researchers speculated that other respiratory problems—such as mild respiratory distress, failure to cry and cyanosis—could be caused by the same factors that increase a child’s risk of PPHN when exposed to SSRI antidepressants.
If you or a loved one used Zoloft or other antidepressants during pregnancy and gave birth to a child with PPHN, heart defects or other birth defects, you may qualify to file a lawsuit. For a free legal consultation, contact the lawyers at Hissey Kientz, LLP to learn more about your legal rights. You can reach us by calling toll-free at 1-866-275-4454, or by filling out the free case evaluation form located on this page.