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Study Links Antidepressant Use In Pregnancy To ADHD In Children

Pregnant womanAccording to the findings of an important new study, women who take antidepressant drugs while pregnant may be more likely to give birth to a child that will one day be diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). This latest research, published in the journal Molecular Psychiatry, joins a growing number of studies establishing a potential connection between the use of antidepressant drugs in pregnancy and a host of serious complications in children. If you took a potentially dangerous antidepressant drug like Paxil or Zoloft while pregnant, and your child has been diagnosed with ADHD or another major disorder, consult our reputable drug injury lawyers at Bandas Law Firm for qualified legal help.


In the study, researchers from Massachusetts General Hospital analyzed the connection between a child’s exposure to antidepressant drugs in utero and autism disorders, but indicated that they may have inadvertently found a link to ADHD instead. Researchers involved in the study examined data on 1,377 children diagnosed with autism and 2,243 children diagnosed with ADHD in New England, comparing them to children born without either disorder. After dismissing a potential connection between antidepressant use in pregnancy and autism in children, the researchers found a statistically significant link between prenatal antidepressant use and a later ADHD diagnosis.


Roughly 20% of women in the United States are prescribed an antidepressant drug while pregnant, and this study is just the latest piece of research linking the use of antidepressant medications during pregnancy to the potential for serious long-term complications in children. In April, a study published in the journal Pediatrics found that children exposed to a widely-used class of antidepressant drugs known as SSRIs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors) in pregnancy were three times as likely to suffer from autism later in childhood, compared to children who weren’t exposed to the medications in utero.


In addition to an increased risk of ADHD and autism, children exposed to antidepressant drugs in utero have also been found to be at a higher risk for many devastating birth defects, including persistent pulmonary hypertension of the newborn (PPHN), spina bifida, heart defects, skull malformations, and more. In recent years, a growing number of Paxil lawsuits and Zoloft lawsuits have been filed on behalf of children born with serious defects and congenital malformations after being exposed to the antidepressant drugs in pregnancy. If you believe your child has been adversely affected by an antidepressant drug or another potentially dangerous medication, contact our birth defect attorneys at Bandas Law Firm today.