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Healey on SSRIs and birth defects


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Here is a piece by David Healey describing a paper just out that finds not just increased birth defects (mostly heart-related, I believe, but he doesn't say much about this) with women taking SSRIs, but about the same increased rate among women who had already stopped taking the drugs 6-9 months earlier. As he discusses, there are multiple possible causes but the possibility of either epigenetic or endocrine effects that endure after withdrawal seems to loom large. I have not read the original article but that seems the gist of what Healey sees. Have a look: http://www.madinamerica.com/2012/07/theres-something-about-mary/

1994-2009 50-100 mg Zoloft (plus tried Effexor, Lexapro, Wellbutrin at times)
5/'09-7/'09 taper off Zoloft
7/'09-12/'09 no zoloft, rough times after ~ 2 mos.
1/'10-6/'10 50 mg zoloft
6/'10-1/'11 slow taper
2/'11-7/'11 off entirely, ok for 2-3 mos., then rough
7/'11-9/'11 50 mg
9/15/'11 - 11/15/'11 taper off
11/15/'11 - 2/'11 clean, doing well but with some PSSD
2/'11 - 6/'11 depression creeps back, fairly significant by May.

6/'14 (long time...!)  life is good, full recovery, at least in terms of SSRI addiction.  Still digging out from the social and professional hole that it all left me in, but despite the loss of far too many years to this business I'm basically doing pretty well.  Still some depression at times, even severe on occasion, but clearly related to past trauma and current circumstances, all things that I am continuing to work through and work on.  I'd say it took at least six months and perhaps a year to fully get back to normal (neuro-psychologically and sexually) after the last dose in 2011.

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This is really scary given that more than one in ten people in the USA are on an SSRI, most of them are women, and we don't have anyone like David Healy sounding the alarm. Come to think of it, it's no wonder there's been such an increase in childhood cancer and other formerly adult diseases, given the enormous amount of prescription drugs that are consumed in this country.

Psychotropic drug history: Pristiq 50 mg. (mid-September 2010 through February 2011), Remeron (mid-September 2010 through January 2011), Lexapro 10 mg. (mid-February 2011 through mid-December 2011), Lorazepam (Ativan) 1 mg. as needed mid-September 2010 through early March 2012

"Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity." -Hanlon's Razor


Introduction: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1588-introducing-jemima/

 

Success Story: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/6263-success-jemima-survives-lexapro-and-dr-dickhead-too/

Please note that I am not a medical professional and my advice is based on personal experience, reading, and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers.

 

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Its interesting and I wonder if my 2 children born after I started Effexor-xr but stopped during pregnancy, is the reason they have learning difficulties. My eldest son was born without my having ever tooK ADs; and he had no issues academically.

 

Both have supposedly ADD, my daughter airy fairy and my son hyperactive. I refused to medicate them instead use diet etc. My youngest who is just turned 9 has been very very hard work. My heart breaks, at the back of my mind I believe ADs played a part in their issues. ???

 

Caro

1995 Post Natal Dep - Zoloft ?dose (as well as 5mg valium and sleeping tablet) Quit after a couple of months.

1998 PND - Effexor-xr 150mg. Tried reducing but failed due to heightened anxiety. Quit cold turkey when pregnant with 3rd child.

2003 PND again on Effexor-xr 150mg. Numerous times tried to wean.

2006 75mg.

2010 Weaned off too fast as per dr recom 75mg every 2nd day etc. was Effexor-xr free for 3 months. Reinstated 75mg

1/6/12 = 72 mg

2/7/12 = 69 mg

16/7/12 = 67.5 mg

1/8/12 = 60 mg

19/8;12 = 52.5 mg

4/9/12 = 45mg

2/10/12 = 37.5 mg

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I am lucky my children didn't suffer birth defects subtle problems. My youngest also had reflux, eczema, asthma, sleep issues, night waking for 7yrs coming into our room, difficulty getting to sleep, irritibility, social issues as he has got older not big issues but difficulty for him. Caro

1995 Post Natal Dep - Zoloft ?dose (as well as 5mg valium and sleeping tablet) Quit after a couple of months.

1998 PND - Effexor-xr 150mg. Tried reducing but failed due to heightened anxiety. Quit cold turkey when pregnant with 3rd child.

2003 PND again on Effexor-xr 150mg. Numerous times tried to wean.

2006 75mg.

2010 Weaned off too fast as per dr recom 75mg every 2nd day etc. was Effexor-xr free for 3 months. Reinstated 75mg

1/6/12 = 72 mg

2/7/12 = 69 mg

16/7/12 = 67.5 mg

1/8/12 = 60 mg

19/8;12 = 52.5 mg

4/9/12 = 45mg

2/10/12 = 37.5 mg

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Very powerful. The original article is at http://davidhealy.org/herding-women/

 

A followup article at http://davidhealy.org/theres-something-about-mary/ is even more disturbing:

A paper looking at antidepressants and birth defects in Denmark has just appeared. Anyone can download it and read for themselves (Jimenez-Solem et al 2012). Its worth reading.

 

The published data demonstrate an increased rate of major birth defects on SSRIs which fits what almost all other studies have found. But this study also finds that women who have stopped their SSRI 6-9 months previously are at a similarly increased risk.

 

....

 

This is an extraordinarily worrying paper – perhaps one of the scariest in recent years.

I’ve said it a million times, these drugs are hormonal disruptors. They disrupt sexual response, they disrupt sugar metabolism, in some women they disrupt menses. Why is it surprising they cause birth defects?

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

All postings © copyrighted.

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Here is a piece by David Healey describing a paper just out that finds not just increased birth defects (mostly heart-related, I believe, but he doesn't say much about this) with women taking SSRIs, but about the same increased rate among women who had already stopped taking the drugs 6-9 months earlier. As he discusses, there are multiple possible causes but the possibility of either epigenetic or endocrine effects that endure after withdrawal seems to loom large. I have not read the original article but that seems the gist of what Healey sees. Have a look: http://www.madinamerica.com/2012/07/theres-something-about-mary/

 

I heard somewhere that studies from Merck showed the drugs can stay in the body for many years, like up to 10 or something. So I can imagine that the baby is still getting the drugs even though the mother has been off. I also read that its not only women taking the drugs that can contribute to birth defects, but if I man is taking them they can also cause problems because the drugs defragment the DNA in the sperm.

Various SSRIs/SNRIs 7- 1/2 years

Went Cold Turkey from Celexa 2011, Stayed Off

Psych Drug Free and Loving Life (over 6 years and counting)

 

How I Stay Well: Diet, exercise, meditation, supplements, etc

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