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Comment & Response
May 2017

Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor Use During Pregnancy

Author Affiliations
  • 1Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, Division of Psychiatry Products, US Food and Drug Administration, Silver Spring, Maryland
  • 2Kenan-Flagler School of Business, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
JAMA Psychiatry. 2017;74(5):539. doi:10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2016.4073

To the Editor Brown et al1 analyzed data for a large prospective birth cohort study in Finland and reported that serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) exposure during pregnancy is associated with later speech and language disorders. The authors’ interpretation was that SSRI use during pregnancy increases the risk for speech and language disorders in offspring. Their analysis is flawed, and applying it to clinical decision making (eg, discontinuing or otherwise avoiding use of SSRIs when otherwise clinically indicated) could have adverse public health consequences.