According to a new study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 15 percent of reproductive-aged women filled a prescription for an antidepressant medication during the years 2008–2013.  The prevalence of antidepressant use increased with age from 8.3% (age range, 15–19) to 20.9% (40–44). Among antidepressants, sertraline was most often prescribed (3.3%).

Given the high prevalence of antidepressant use among women of childbearing age, the CDC is working with the March of Dimes to raise awareness about the use of antidepressant medications by women of reproductive age.  The very important message here is that women should discuss their medications with their healthcare providers before they are pregnant.

The CDC’s Treating for Two: Safer Medication Use in Pregnancy initiative focuses on providing women and their healthcare providers with reliable and accessible information on medications commonly used during pregnancy. This initiative aims to expand and accelerate research and to deliver up-to-date information to women and healthcare providers so that they have enough information to make informed treatment decisions and can take the safest medications to manage their conditions. More information is available at:

Ruta Nonacs, MD PhD

Antidepressant Prescription Claims Among Reproductive-Aged Women With Private Employer-Sponsored Insurance — United States 2008–2013 (CDC)

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