Pregnant women who are suffering from depression may be alarmed by a recent research study result which associates selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressant Zoloft to the occurrence of autism in unborn kids. The risk of having a child with autism is twice as high among women who took SSRI antidepressants in the year preceding delivery. The risk is found four times higher when SSRI antidepressants are taken during the first trimester of pregnancy. Autism is one of the many alleged Zoloft sertraline birth defects.
The study linking sertraline or Zoloft to autism was published in the journal Archives of General Psychiatry. The research was led by Lisa Croen of Kaiser Permanente Northern California. The study reviewed medical records of more than 1,600 children, 298 of whom had autism attributed to the prenatal exposure of SSRI drug. Although the study failed to establish a direct link between SSRI drugs and autism, the numbers could be alarming and would suggest that further studies on the matter should be conducted.