OBJECTIVE: We hypothesized that in-utero SSRI exposure affects Apgar scores and immediate post-delivery oxygen requirements.
STUDY DESIGN: SSRI in-utero exposure was assessed retrospectively in preterm neonates ≥ 28 weeks gestation and term neonates. Primary outcome was Apgar <7 at five minutes and delivery room oxygen requirements. Secondary endpoints included one-minute Apgar, length of stay, birth weight, and NICU admission.
RESULTS: Fifty-one preterm and 117 term neonates were exposed to a SSRI; mostly to sertraline. Pre-term SSRI-exposed neonates had 4.1 times higher delivery room oxygen requirements. One minute Apgar <7 was 3.5 times higher and NICU admission 5 times higher 95% CI (1.3–19) in SSRI-exposed term neonates. Higher doses of sertraline had associated adverse outcomes.
CONCLUSION: In-utero SSRI exposure was associated with increased neonatal care at birth, differences in Apgar scores compared with controls, and increased NICU admissions. Higher sertraline doses were associated with poorer outcomes.
Effects of in-utero exposure to selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors and venlafaxine on term and preterm infants