24-Hour Crisis Hotline: (877)SAFEGBC or (877)723-3422 Mental Health & Substance Abuse Issues

6502 Nursery Drive, Suite 100
Victoria, TX 77904
(361)575-0611
(800)421-8825
Fax: (361)578-5500

Autism Spectrum Disorder
Resources
Basic InformationLatest News
Severe Morning Sickness Tied to Autism Risk in KidsMore U.S. Kids Being Diagnosed With Autism, ADHDU.S. Autism Rates Rising Fastest for Hispanics, BlacksBack-to-School Tips for Kids on the Autism SpectrumScientists Uncover More Autism GenesUnlocking Speech for Kids With AutismHigh Levels of Estrogen in Womb Might Raise Autism RiskExtreme Eating Habits Could Be an Early Clue to AutismAutism Largely Caused by Genetics, Not Environment: StudyWomen's Exposure to Solvents at Work Tied to Autism in ChildrenCan Medical Marijuana Help Kids With Autism?Developmental Tests Might Spot Autism at Even Younger AgesFor People With Autism, Encounters With Police Can Turn DangerousTreatments Targeting Social Behavior Hormone Show Promise With Autism'Microbiome' May Be Key to Autism SymptomsAutism Diagnoses Reliable at 14 Months, Study FindsYoung Adults With Autism Need Jobs, But Resources Vary By StateCould Treating Gut Bacteria Help Ease Autism Symptoms?Kids With Autism 'In Tune' With Mom's Feelings: StudySmartphone App May Boost Social Skills in Kids With AutismPesticides Tied to Autism Risk in KidsCan Some Children Outgrow Autism?Burden of Autism in Teens Weighs Heaviest on Minorities, PoorLargest Study Ever Finds No Link Between Measles Vaccine, AutismPoor Sleep Plagues Many Kids With AutismAutism, ADHD in One Child Tied to Raised Risk in SiblingsAnother Tally Puts Autism Cases at 1 in 40Prolonged Brain Connections Seen in Adults With AutismU.S. Autism Rate Rises to 1 in 40 Children: ReportMusic Therapy Helps Kids With Autism Connect to OthersDoes Air Pollution Raise Autism Risk?Stigma of Autism Can Take Toll on PsycheAutism Risk: Mom's Health May Matter More Than MedsGuideline Changes Have Asperger's Community on Edge
Questions and AnswersLinks
Related Topics

Childhood Mental Disorders and Illnesses

Autism Risk: Mom's Health May Matter More Than Meds

HealthDay News
by -- Robert Preidt
Updated: Oct 31st 2018

new article illustration

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 31, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Many pregnant women may wonder if antidepressants -- or other drugs acting on the brain's neurotransmitters -- might raise their baby's odds of developing autism. Now, reassuring research suggests that's not the case.

But a mother's health before and during pregnancy may play a role in autism spectrum disorders, according to researchers from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, in New York City.

For the study, the investigators assessed the risks associated with 180 medications that target neurotransmitters, including antidepressants and antipsychotics.

"Our data indicate that the majority of medications known to affect neurotransmitters, and taken by women during pregnancy, may not themselves influence the estimates of offspring autism risk," said study first author Magdalena Janecka. She's a postdoctoral fellow in the Autism Center for Research and Treatment at Mount Sinai.

However, the researchers did find that rates of autism were higher among children of mothers with poorer overall health before pregnancy.

This finding suggests that a mother's health is a more important factor in a child's development than the medications she takes during pregnancy, the study authors said in a Mount Sinai news release.

The study included data from nearly 100,000 children born in Israel between 1997 and 2007.

The researchers adjusted the findings to account for the child's year of birth and maternal factors, such as the mother's age at the child's birth, history of psychiatric and neurological disorders, and number of medical diagnoses around pregnancy.

Previous research on autism and use of certain drugs during pregnancy had raised some alarms. But those studies looked at only a small number of drugs, the study authors noted.

Janecka and her colleagues are now investigating how a mother's health could affect a child's risk of autism.

In the United States, about one in 59 children has an autism spectrum disorder, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. People with autism have social and communication difficulties that can range from mild to severe.

The report was published Oct. 31 in the journal JAMA Psychiatry.

More information

The U.S National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke has more on autism.