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Studies shed light on SAD, antidepressant medication connection - KBZK.com | Continuous News | Bozeman, Montana

Studies shed light on SAD, antidepressant medication connection

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About six percent of pregnant women take antidepressant medication. About six percent of pregnant women take antidepressant medication.
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About six percent of pregnant women take antidepressant medication and previous studies have shown that these mothers are more likely to have children with autism.

Two studies now shed light on what's behind that link and give some reassuring news for parents. The fear has been that antidepressant medication during pregnancy somehow increases the risk of autism spectrum disorder (SAD) in their children.

But two studies have found that the cause may be not the drug itself but something else linked to depression.

“Factors could include more psychological problems, it could include genetic factors, it could include more environmental factors like poorer prenatal care,” explained Dr. Brian D'onofrio, the lead author of one of the studies.

Both studies found an increased risk of (SAD) about twice normal, but the records of more than 1.5 million women suggested the medication itself was not to blame.

“We looked at women who used anti-depressants in one pregnancy but not another,” D'onofrio said. “And we found there was no difference in rates of autism among those siblings.

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