Short-term neonatal outcome among term infants after in utero exposure to serotonin reuptake inhibitors

Leah Leibovitch, Noa Rymer-Haskel, Irit Schushan-Eisen, Jacob Kuint, Tzipora Strauss, Ayala Maayan-Metzger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SRI) medications are commonly in use during pregnancy. Objectives: To evaluate short-term neonatal clinical signs among infants exposed to intrauterine SRI medications, in order to estimate the need for postnatal monitoring and observation. Methods: Retrospective review of clinical data in medical files of term infants born to mothers who reported treatment with SRIs during pregnancy. Results: Out of 401 infants in the study group, 165 (41%) were reported to have at least 1 clinical symptom, including respiratory distress, jitteriness, restlessness, feeding difficulties, regurgitations, fever ≥38°C, a short cyanotic event and convulsions. In the symptomatic group, 70% exhibited mild symptoms, among them restlessness, jitteriness or feeding difficulties, while around 30% exhibited significant symptoms. Overall, 12% of the total cohort, mostly males (70%), presented significant clinical symptoms, but none had an urgent or life-threatening condition. Infants in the study group were shorter in length and had a higher rate of Apgar score <7 at 1 min, meconium-stained amniotic fluid and respiratory distress. Conclusions: Despite the high incidence of clinical signs among infants born to SRI-treated mothers, most of their symptoms were mild and self-limited. These infants should be observed while they are close to their mothers on the maternity ward for 48 h after birth.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)65-70
Number of pages6
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 2013


  • Clinical signs
  • Neonatal outcome
  • Serotonin reuptake inhibitors


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