Antidepressants, Miscarriage Linked

Use translates into a 68% increased risk, say researchers
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted May 31, 2010 1:45 PM CDT
Antidepressants, Miscarriage Linked
New study links antidepressants, miscarriage.   (©

Women who take antidepressants while pregnant run an increased risk of suffering a miscarriage, according to a new study. Canadian scientists looked at the records of 70,000 women and found that of the 5,000 who had a clinically recorded miscarriage, 5.5% had filled at least one prescription for an antidepressant. That translates to a 68% higher risk among users than among those who didn't take the meds.

The risk was even greater when women took antidepressants from two or more classes, and Paxil and Effexor were associated with the greatest risk. Time notes that because the study looked already-collected data, it's possible that some of the increased risk could be attributed to depression itself, which has been linked to miscarriage. "The effect is too big," counters one researcher, "and while it may explain a small portion, it wouldn't explain the totality of the effect." (More pregnancy stories.)

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