"The use of sertraline during the first trimester of pregnancy was associated with increased odds of the following birth defects:omphalocele (six-fold), anal atresia and limb reduction defects (four-fold), and septal defects (two-fold)." (read article here)
So, understandably, I'm concerned about risk factors of getting pregnant. I'm on 50 mg a day, which is a really low dose, and I'm wondering if I can drop to 25 mg and still keep steady.
The hard thing is that depression/anxiety is very difficult for a developing fetus. It increases the risk of miscarriage significantly, and can effect baby birth weight (anyone remember my 5 lb 14 oz full-term baby?)
The question is, where is the balance. Obviously, the higher the intake of Sertraline, the higher the risk factors. So, where is that balance between risks? The two main factors that keep coming up in my head are:
1) I would never be able to forgive myself if something happened to my baby
2) I need to be able to function on some level
Functionality is actually a really serious concern. There's no doubt that I function better, daily, on the higher dosages of Sertraline. I ended up on 50 mg again because it also makes me incredibly nauseous, and, on occasion, increases my number of bad nights with insomnia. It also makes my "gut sick". (I'll leave it at that). Those are all common side effects.
Past the first trimester, the concern is that a baby, upon birth, would go through withdrawal from the drug. Withdrawal from Sertraline is horrible and includes, dizziness, exhaustion, nausea, and fainting. In babies this turns into high muscle-tone, anxiety, irritability, and difficulty eating.
I would appreciate thoughts/stories/insights/opinions.