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Has anyone got any experience of taking citalopram in pregnancy

(15 Posts)
pandagirl03 Tue 04-Nov-08 16:01:26

Hello, i was put on citalopram i had been taking it just over 2 weeks and was finding it very affective and actually felt very good. Well then i found out i was pregnant so rang the doctors to say about me taking citalopram and being pregnant. The doctor told me to stop taking it straight away, so i did. I then had a appointment with my normal doctor and he also said i shouldn't take it and that things should be ok. Well i haven't been taking it for maybe 11 days now. But the last few days i have been getting increasingly panicky, snappy, very tired and overall not feeling good at all. So last night i took one of my tablets. I then rang the doctors this morning but my normal doctor was off. So a tirage nurse rang me back, she was not very understanding saying i should NOT be taking citalopram and 1 tablet will NOT make me feel better. She said she will book me to see a doctor but the earliest they can get me in is friday afternoon. I feel at the end of my teather and really dont know what to do. Any advice from anyone?? Oh by the way i was on 10mg of citalopram.

ellielou02 Wed 05-Nov-08 07:39:38

sorry not got any experience of taking it during pregnancy but hope someone answers you soon, take care x

Jael Wed 05-Nov-08 11:02:23

I was on citalopram for panic attacks for about a year. I was advised to stop taking them when I found out I was pregnant. I'm 14 weeks now. I too felt loads worse as soon as I came off them. I know it's really hard, but I'm trying to focus all my energy on having a healthy baby. There's been a few threads on here about citalopram and pregnancy, some women are told to carry on taking it, I suppose it depends on your doctor. My doctor and midwife both said that not enough research has been done on the effects of citalopram on a the growing baby and after it's born, so I decided not to take any risks. If your finding it really hard, maybe you should go back to your GP they might be able to put you on a lower dosage or another form of medicine.

Jael X

i was on citalopram when i found out i was preg. DR said to some off right away.
go see your gp and talk to him about how you are feeling.
no advice in the meantime though. sorry.

pandagirl03 Wed 05-Nov-08 11:11:04

Thank you all for your replys, i was put on it for panic attacks too. I am waiting for my doctor to call me back, my surgery dont seem very helpfull to be honest. So god knows when i will finally speak to a doctor.

elizabethbob Wed 05-Nov-08 13:39:35

A lot of women have been on citalopram through pregnancy and have been fine as have their babies. You shouldn't have been told to "just stop" citalopram as you should have had an appointment to discuss the risks of stopping vs the small unknown risks to baby of continuing vs risk to your mental health etc. Also, you should stop these medications gradually to reduce risk of sudden recurrence of symptoms.

As far as I know, there have been animal trials that show no increase in congenital defects with citalopram. However, the reason why some doctors are nervous is that there have not been many large human studies or trials. The few studies that there have been have suggested that exposure to citalopram in early pregnancy is NOT associated with increased risk of major congenital malformataions. Doctors tend to be happier with fluoxetine purely because a lot of women have been pregnant on that so more is known about it. Any SSRI (citalopram, prozac (fluoxetine) etc) taken in the period around birth can cause neonatal withdrawal (drowsy etc) so hospitals tend to observe those babies for 24 – 48 hours after birth to make sure they are not drowsy/ need help with breathing / feeding.

It is important that you are mentally fit and well. There are many, many GPs who are happy for women to continue citalopram. 10mg is a v low dose anyway. It is perhaps worth asking to have an appointment with an obstetrician to discuss it.

I hope you are feeling OK. You must push to see a doctor sooner if you are feeling wobbly/ panicky etc. You must look after yourself!

wtfhashappened Wed 05-Nov-08 13:44:02

i was on 20 mg of citalopram all the way through my pg with dd3 - there is no risk at all to mothers, according to my consultant psychiatrist- there has been a very small study which had a little evidence that babies were more unsettled when born (how do you tell when a baby is unsettled anyway). The advice I was given was the risk of coming off was worse than staying on - and she was a happy and healthy baby - much more settled than the other two). if you go through some old threads on this - search under citalopram, you will see some of the conversations had (I was under a different name then) - the advice was very good.

ThePregnantHedgeWitch Wed 05-Nov-08 14:49:36

Message withdrawn

froggy16 Wed 05-Nov-08 16:01:42

I too am on citalopram 20mg, and am 8.5weeks pregnant. My doctor said it's fine to keep taking them. You shouldn't just stop taking anti-depressants, you should wean yourself off if you are going to stop. smile

wtfhashappened Wed 05-Nov-08 21:10:08

I think you also have to ask for a specialist opinion if you are getting conflicting advice - as we are all doing here. There is something to be said for the importance of you being not stressed in pg as well and that is a factor which needs to be taken into account. with me, I had already had pnd from dc2 when I accidentally fell pg with dd, so was already being treated, and we moved house and dh went away for 6 months with work jsut after she was born, so in our case, it was really important that I was kept as stable as possible, and it did work for us. Good Luck

holscarroll Thu 01-Jan-09 14:00:36

Hi there, I'm really new to this site. After 3 years of general/social anxitety/depression/agoraphobia to name a few the doc put me on 20mg citalopram. i had serious side effects but thinnk these could have been psychological, like a full blown panick attack? I was presribed 20mg 6 weeks after my baby was born and have still not touched them sincde although some days i think i have to. thing is, because my fiance works all day im scared that i wont be able to deal with the side effects on my own having 2 babies aged 2 and 7 months. i also have a few boxes of 10mg to start me off. i really need help and advice because if they make me into a new woman who is outgoing/sociable and happy then i would love to know i could cope with, and not panick at side effets. thanks.

lucyloo1981 Fri 27-May-16 17:53:09

Hi i was previously on citropam and was told to come off it when trying for a baby. I am 5 months pregnant, having anxitey attacks, i have been prescribed to go back on citropam, told that there is very little study the tablets effect the baby, reading the info in the tablets it say about during pregnancy it can cause breathing difficulties. I am not sure what to do for the best!

lucyloo1981 Fri 27-May-16 18:06:31

Holscarroll, i have been prescribed 10mg citropam, i am really confussed wether to take it or not with what it say about the baby's breathing being effected! So confused..!

Sophia1984 Fri 27-May-16 18:33:27

Hi lucyloo I was on citalopram until 20 weeks and no midwife or doctor ever put pressure on me to come off it - the opinion seems to be that mum's mental health needs to be weighed up against the tiny risk of something called persistent pulmonary hypertension. There's more info about this here: womensmentalhealth.org/posts/ssris-and-persistent-pulmonary-hypertension-of-the-newborn. The conclusion is that:

"If we assume that these findings are correct, the risk is still relatively small; the authors estimate the risk of PPHN to be less than 1% in infants exposed to SSRIs in utero. Thus many women with more severe or recurrent illness may elect to continue treatment with SSRIs during pregnancy, acknowledging that the risks associated with untreated depression are greater than the risks of SSRI use."

In my case, I chose to come off citalopram as my anxiety is primarily health anxiety, and I knew I would do myself more harm worrying about the impact of the anti-depressants. However, a doctor yesterday told me I could always go back on them if I felt anxious! You could also ask about sertraline as I think it is less risky than citalopram. It's so difficult to know what is best to do, but I hope that information helps and that you feel better soon x

Tans1987 Sat 28-May-16 10:15:27

Hi,
I was on 20mg citalapram when I found out I was pregnant. I was told to continue and drop to 10mg for a month and stop, if I felt I could which I did. I am now 23 weeks pregnant and my panic attacks have started all over again. ( I had 12 weeks on nothing) I went back to see my GP and they have advised that me having consistent panic attacks and being stressed isn't good for my unborn baby either. They have now prescribed me Sertraline, they have said its not 100% risk free but more research has been done on this medication. I started taking it on Tuesday and I am still a bit concerned about it, but if it stops the panic it must be better for my baby. I hope it helps xx

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