Monthly Archives: July 2010

Non-Pharmacologic Options for the Treatment of Antenatal Depression: A Quick Review

About 15% of women suffer from depression during pregnancy, and the rate of depressive illness is greater in women with pre-existing histories of depression.  While there are data to support the use of certain antidepressants during pregnancy, many women are reluctant to seek pharmacologic treatment during pregnancy and may benefit from efficacious non-pharmacologic options.  In a recent review article from Medscape, Christopher Tjoa and colleagues from the University of Pennsylvania summarize the literature assessing the efficacy of non-pharmacologic options for the treatment of antenatal depression.

Anxiety During Pregnancy Predicts Worse Outcomes

In treating pregnant women with mood or anxiety disorders, we tend to focus primarily on the reproductive safety of psychotropic medications; however, it must be recognized that withholding or withdrawing pharmacologic treatment for depression or anxiety during pregnancy may carry some degree of risk. Untreated psychiatric illness in the mother cannot be considered a benign event, and a number of studies have indicated that depression during pregnancy may negatively affect pregnancy outcomes (reviewed in Bonari 2004).