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Study suggests there is no reason to believe that antidepressants are linked to autism

22 November, 2013
No link between autism in children and antidepressant use in pregnancy. examiner.com.November 21, 2013. In a new study, Danish researchers looked at mothers who took antidepressants during pregnancy to see if their children were more likely to have autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Previous research indicated there could be a slight increased risk of ASD in children born to women who took antidepressants. The scientists sought to find out if there was a clear link between the mothers’ use of antidepressants in pregnancy and autism, or if factors such as depression in and of itself in the mothers may have increased ASD risk.See previous related articleStudy suggests there is no reason to believe that antidepressants influence suicidal thinking in kid
Study suggests there is no reason to believe that antidepressants are linked to autism
The scientists studied all children born alive in Denmark from 1996-2006 (668,468) and their parents. From medical records, they found out what prescriptions the pregnant women were taking. They also looked at the records of parents of all the children studied to see if they had a psychiatric disorder such as depression.
The researchers found out how many of the children were later diagnosed with an ASD. They then compared ASD rates in children born to mothers who took an antidepressant while pregnant to ASD rates in children born to mothers who did not take antidepressants while pregnant.
Neither children born to mothers who took antidepressants or who had a psychiatric diagnosis without taking antidepressants were found to have a higher rate of autism.
"…There was no significant association between prenatal exposure to antidepressant medication and autism spectrum disorders in the offspring," the authors write.
Journal reference:  Sørensen MJ, Grønborg TK, Christensen J, Parner ET, Vestergaard M, Schendel D, Pedersen LH. Published Date November 2013 Volume 2013:5(1) Pages 449 – 459 DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2147/CLEP.S53009

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