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Taking paxil for depression and panic disorder. Trying to conceive. Will this cause any harmful effect?

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Practicing since : 2005
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Good Morning,

I am currently taking 60 mg of Paxil for depression and panic disorder. I would also like to become pregnant. I know that Paxil is a category D, however, from a lot of research I have done, the risk of defect seems pretty low. I cant come off this medicine as I have tried many of things and none have worked except Paxil. Please advise if this really is too risky or it was placed into category D because of a very small number of findings. Thank you
Posted Mon, 15 Apr 2013 in Getting Pregnant
Answered by Dr. Rhea Chanda 1 hour later
Paxil is category D drug as you have stated. That means that in has potential high risk side effects as proven by trials and studies. FDA has disapproved the drug for use in pregnancy due to potential side effects. In general,the risk of heart defects in the fetus are low but with the use of paxil in pregnancy it almost doubles. So yes,it would be my opinion that paxil not be used in pregnancy. In fact,it only needs to be changed for the 1st trimester during the development of the fetus. Now studies have proved the risk however small it may be,but about 2% pf pregnant women taking paxil can have birth defects. That may appear as a small number,but the severity of the condition may differ from person to person. So it needs to be an informed decision on your part whether you want to continue.
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