The evidence is mounting demonstrating a relationship between the use of SSRIs such as Zoloft and Autism or Autistic Spectrum Diseases (ASDs) in offspring. The relationship appears to be particularly strong when these drugs are taken during the first trimester of pregnancy.
A 2011 article published in the Archives of General Psychiatry reported on the possible association:
Prenatal exposure to antidepressant medications was reported for 20 case children (6.7%) and 50 control children (3.3%). In adjusted logistic regression models, we found a 2-fold increased risk of ASD associated with treatment with selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors by the mother during the year before delivery (adjusted odds ratio, 2.2 [95% confidence interval, 1.2-4.3]), with the strongest effect associated with treatment during the first trimester (adjusted odds ratio, 3.8 [95% confidence interval, 1.8-7.8]). No increase in risk was found for mothers with a history of mental health treatment in the absence of prenatal exposure to selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors.
Nidel Law, P.L.L.C. is investigating the potential relationship and is interested in hearing from parents of children that have been diagnosed with autism spectrum diseases (ASD). If you are a parent with a child with and ASD and believe that it may be attributable to the use of an SSRI antidepressant during pregnancy, please complete the following form.