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Researchers find no evidence that prenatal exposure to antidepressants increases risk for autism, ADHD

Tuesday, 2/9/2016

Recent findings from 3 Massachusetts health care systems have found there is no evidence of the increased risk in the diagnoses of autism or ADHD with prenatal consumption of antidepressants.  However, in previous cases described in a report in Transitional Psychiatry it is probable the correlation between the diagnosis of autism or ADHD is due to the mother’s severity of depression.  Although there was an increase in both autism and ADHD for those children whom their mothers’ were taking antidepressants prior to pregnancy, the likelihood of exposure during pregnancy does not increase the risks.  “The fact that we now have found, in two large case-control studies, no increase in the risk for autism with antidepressant use itself should be very reassuring,” Roy Perlis, MD, MSC, MGH Department of Psychiatry.  In essence there is a risk in taking any form of medication while pregnant and is best to consult with a clinician and remained informed to make the best possible decision.

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