Brisdelle and Pregnancy
Taking Brisdelle in the third trimester of pregnancy (the last three months) may cause side effects in the newborn baby. These side effects can occur right after birth, and can be serious enough to require the newborn to need a prolonged hospital stay or artificial assistance with feeding and breathing.
Side effects that have been reported in newborns whose mothers took medications like Brisdelle in the third trimester include:
- Breathing problems, which may lead to a lack of oxygen in the blood
- Changes in body temperature
- Difficulty feeding
- Low blood sugar levels (hypoglycemia)
- Limp muscle tone
- Muscle rigidity
- Overactive reflexes
- Excessive crying.
Some of these symptoms are similar to withdrawal-type symptoms that can occur when Brisdelle (and similar medicines) are suddenly stopped. The symptoms also resemble symptoms of serotonin syndrome, a condition that can occur when there is too much serotonin in the body.
Also, taking Brisdelle during late pregnancy increases the risk for a serious condition known as persistent pulmonary hypertension of the newborn (PPHN). While in the womb (uterus), a baby receives the oxygen he or she needs via the uterus, and the baby's blood bypasses the lungs. When a baby is born, however, its circulation changes, and blood begins to pass through the lungs to pick up oxygen.
In babies with PPHN, this change doesn't happen. This can lead to serious problems, including death. In one study, infants whose mothers took medicines like Brisdelle (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, or SSRIs) late in pregnancy had a six-times-higher risk for developing PPHN than infants whose mothers did not take SSRIs.