Prozac during pregnancy; maybe you’ve been taking it before, but is it smart to take it during pregnancy? Find out all the answers and educate yourself.
Although treatment with fluoxetine or Prozac has been accepted in pregnancy, its use should be exclusive to those clinical situations that justify the potential risk to the fetus. What should you know about it?
Fluoxetine or Prozac is one of the best studied drugs during pregnancy. It is indicated in the treatment of depression and belongs to the group of serotonin re-uptake inhibitors (SSRIs). This is since it has the ability to increase the levels of this neurotransmitter, which is key in maintaining the balance of our mood.
Fluoxetine, under the Prozac brand, was the first drug marketed in the United States by the company Eli Lilly in 1988 for the treatment of major depression. He inspired a lot of confidence in the medical community, since it had the same efficacy as existing antidepressant drugs and, in addition, had fewer adverse effects.
Today, new molecules for the treatment of depressive disorders exist, although worldwide, people most frequently use fluoxetine. Next, we detail its use during the pregnancy period.
Depression in pregnancy or prenatal depression
Pregnancy is a stage that marks the life of women. The hormonal sway that takes place in the body can trigger various types of emotions and feelings, sometimes opposed.
When the feeling of sadness persists over time, it may be the case that there is a picture of prenatal depression, a complex state to which we must pay special attention.
The hormonal swaying that takes place in the body of the pregnant woman can affect prenatal depression.
It is a difficult problem to detect, since normal signs of pregnancy itself are similar, such as fatigue, reluctance or difficulty falling asleep. If the following symptoms appear, we should ask for professional help:
- Sadness and episodes of disconsolate crying for no apparent reason.
- Impossibility to enjoy activities that you used to like.
- Irritation and bad mood.
- Feeling of emptiness and guilt.
- Loss of social skills.
- Pessimistic thoughts for the future.
- Difficulty maintaining concentration.
- Changes in eating, rest and hygiene habits.
Also the future mother can show ambiguous feelings towards the baby and even rejection of the idea of having to face the delivery.
Untreated prenatal depression can lead to significant side effects for the mother and the baby, as well as an increased risk of spontaneous abortion, premature delivery, low birth weight or delayed growth of the baby.
In addition, suffering from prenatal depression increases the chance of suffering depression after childbirth by 25%; however, the benefits and risks of taking antidepressants during pregnancy must be taken into account. Here we tell you what you should know.
Can I take Prozac during pregnancy?
Fluoxetine is the drug generally prescribed for the treatment of prenatal depression and although the FDA classifies it as category C, it has been considered a safe therapy for pregnant women suffering from depression, always assessing the risk / benefit of treatment.
However, according to scientific literature, treatment with fluoxetine during the first trimester of pregnancy may be associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular malpractice in the baby.
The data suggest that the risk of the newborn suffering a cardiovascular defect after maternal exposure to fluoxetine is of the order of 2/100 compared to an expected rate for these defects in the general population of approximately 1/100.
Other epidemiological studies suggest that the use of SSRIs in the final stage of pregnancy may increase the risk of persistent pulmonary hypertension in the newborn (HPPN).
5 cases per 1,000 pregnancies is the real risk. In the general population, 1 or 2 cases of PNPH occur per 1,000 births.
You should use Prozac during pregnancy only when the clinical situation of your future merits it, as it carries significant risks to the fetus.
According to the AEMPS, fluoxetine should not be used during pregnancy. That’s unless the clinical situation of the woman requires this treatment and the potential risk to the fetus is justified.
It is especially important that the discontinuation of fluoxetine treatment is not abrupt. Proceed to a gradual reduction of the dose over a period of one to two weeks. This way you’ll avoid the appearance of withdrawal symptoms.
Also, if you use fluoxetine during pregnancy, exercise caution at the last stage or just before delivery. This is because reports show some effects in newborns, such as:
- Persistent crying
- Difficulty breastfeeding or sleeping
Treatment with fluoxetine during pregnancy, both in the first and in the last stage, should be evaluated with the psychiatrist. The professional should evaluate the risk / benefit for both the future mother and the baby.
Therefore, if you find yourself with a significant depression, consider maintaining the treatment. However, if it is a well-controlled depression, the ideal is to do without fluoxetine treatment and have psychological support.
Don’t forget to SHARE whether you should use Prozac during pregnancy with your friends and family on your social networks!