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Harvard Medical School



In Brief: Hormone Replacement Has No Impact on Mortality in Women

While there have been concerns regarding the risks associated with prolonged use of hormone replacement, an increasing number of studies suggest that the risk may be relatively low in certain populations and that hormone replacement is appropriate in certain settings.  A recent study published in JAMA has focused on mortality rates in women treated with […]

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Why Do Many Continue To Recommend Tapering SSRI Antidepressants During the Third Trimester?

  In 2005, we saw the first reports describing an increased risk of “poor neonatal adaptation” in infants with prenatal exposure to selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressants in late pregnancy.  Since that time, studies have consistently indicate that about 25%-30% of infants exposed to SSRIs late in pregnancy manifest symptoms of poor neonatal adaptation. […]

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The Etiology of Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder: 5 Interwoven Pieces

The following post was first published in Current Psychiatry, published September 2017, Vol. 16, No. 9, p. 20-28. Check out the article on Current Psychiatry or listen to Dr. Raffi discuss treatment of menstrual–related mood and anxiety disorders. By Edwin R. Raffi, MD, MPH, & Marlene P. Freeman, MD In an age when psychiatry strives to identify […]

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Antenatal Exposure to Antidepressant and Risk of Psychiatric Illness in the Child

  When we provide consultations regarding the use of antidepressants during pregnancy, one of the most difficult questions we have to answer is related to the long-term effects of prenatal antidepressant exposure. Specifically, do antidepressants used by the mother during pregnancy affect the long term development of the fetus?  While many studies have attempted to […]

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Estrogen Receptor Modulator Raloxifene for Women with Schizophrenia

  Several years ago, we reviewed a paper suggesting that estrogen may have beneficial effects for women with schizophrenia.  In this study, women with schizophrenia were treated with estrogen in addition to their antipsychotic medications.  Adjunctive treatment with estrogen was associated with significant improvement in their positive symptoms (hallucinations, delusions), but the women experienced no […]

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Weekly Roundup for AUGUST 31, 2017: Recent Publications in Women’s Mental Health

A new study looks at the effects of telephone-delivered depression care management in postpartum women.  The July issue of Birth Defects Research features a collection of reviews on perinatal mental health.   Telephone-Based Depression Care Management for Postpartum Women: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Wisner KL, Sit DKY, McShea M, Luther JF, Eng HF, Dills JL, […]

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Prenatal exposure to benzodiazepines and sibling-controlled cohort study

  Over the last decade, we have seen multiple studies looking at the long term effects of prenatal exposure to antidepressants, particularly the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors or SSRIs, on children’s behavior.  Although benzodiazepines, such as lorazepam (Ativan) and clonazepam (Klonopin), and sedative-hypnotic medications are used relatively frequently during pregnancy, we have much less information […]

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National Pregnancy Registry for Atypical Antipsychotics Milestone

  We are excited to announce the enrollment of our 1000th participant in the National Pregnancy Registry for Atypical Antipsychotics! Formed in 2008, the Registry was established at MGH to prospectively evaluate the rates of malformations among infants exposed in utero to atypical antipsychotics. Data from the Registry thus far suggest that atypical antipsychotics as […]

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New Research from the CWMH: Patterns of Atypical Antipsychotic Use During Pregnancy

  The use of the newer “atypical” or second-generation antipsychotic agents is increasing.  Atypical antipsychotics are now used to treat a spectrum of psychiatric disorders, including schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, major depression, PTSD and other anxiety disorders.  Using data from the Medicaid Analytic eXtract (MAX) data of pregnant women who delivered infants born between 2001 and […]

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Weekly Roundup for AUGUST 18, 2017: Recent Publications in Women’s Mental Health

Brandlistuen and colleagues look at the long-term effects of prenatal exposure to benzodiazepines and sedative-hypnotics, attempting to control for genetic and environmental confounds by using sibling-controlled comparisons.  Using data from Danish registers, Liu and colleagues find that first-onset nonpsychotic postpartum affective disorder can be a marker of underlying bipolarity. Association of prenatal exposure to benzodiazepines […]

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