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Mental Health

Bipolar Disorder Type 2 and Getting Pregnant

05/16/2008

Question:

I am currently on Lamictal 100mg twice a day, and Seroquel XR 300mg at bedtime. My boyfriend and I are trying to concieve, and at this point I have some concerns. I know the best answer would be to speak to my psych doctor, but before I do so I would like to form my own opinion based on asking some questions. That way I know what is best for me and my baby. Is it safe to stay on these meds while I am trying to concieve? I am afraid to stop/switch to a new med because it could take a while to get pregnant. Thats too long to be stopping or switching meds. I have also heard that as long as I find out I`m pregnant ASAP, and then speak to my psych doctor I should be safe. I have also heard that if I start taking a folic acid supplement, it will help decrease my chances of hurting my baby between the time of conception and finding out. Whats the norm in regards to this concern? Any information would be helpful. Thanks

Answer:

The best information we have to date suggests that you should stay on your medications when you become pregnant. Getting enough folic acid in your diet as well as taking a supplement decreases the risk of birth defects. The American College of Obstetric and Gynecology in an April 2008 publication states that Lamotrigine (Lamictal) is the best drug to treat bipolar disorder during pregnancy. So, if you are well controlled on Lamictal and Seroquel, it is best that you stay on this therapy.

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Response by:

Debra K Gardner, PhamD Debra K Gardner, PhamD
Former Assistant Clinical Professor of Pharmacy College Business Office
Internal Resource Pool-Allied at OSU Medical Center
Wexner Medical Center
The Ohio State University