Meds safe during pregnancy? (Wellbutrin, Cylert)

  1. In addition to doing other research, I thought I'd ask you all if anyone has had a patient who has taken Wellbutrin throughout their pregnancy.
    I found a Wellbutrin Pregnancy Registry, but the info is hard to interpret.

    Cylert (for ADD) isn't prescribed very often and so there is next to no information about it.

    Anyway, I'm figuring you will all tell me that it's a decision that I have to make on my own, and I know this. Maybe I just need to throw all of my questions/concerns out there into cyberspace and see if anyone has any experiences/ideas.

    My pysch doc wasn't very helpful when I asked him about it. I have not yet asked an OB doc, but I would, of course. But nurses are easier to talk with sometimes.

    I've been on Wellbutrin/Cylert for 8 years, after trying numerous other meds. These meds changed my life. I have had "drug holidays" since, and always revert right back to the old feelings. I feel that I would not want to continue these meds during pregnancy, though. My ideal plan would be to "abstain" from my meds during pregnancy, and start taking them again after delivery (thereby forgoing bf'ing) if I needed to.

    Am I fooling myself that I could go this long? Others that I've talked to kind of brush my concerns off, saying that with all the hormone changes during pregnancy, they're just sure I'll be fine. I'm not so sure. On the flip side, if I were to take them for all or part of my pregnancy, and something were to happen (birth defects, etc), I know I'd blame myself for not holding out.... even if I didn't know for sure that meds were the cause.

    I've been pondering this for months and am not really any closer to a decision. Anyway, thanks for reading.
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  2. 8 Comments

  3. by   fiestynurse
    The FDA rates Wellbutrin and Cylert as a category "B" drug, which means it is relatively safe to take while pregnant and during breast feeding.

    Category "B" = NO EVIDENCE OF RISK IN HUMANS. Adequate, well-controlled studies in pregnant women have not shown increased risk of fetal abnormalities despite adverse findings in animals, or, in the absence of adequate human studies, animal studies show no fetal risk. The chance of fetal harm is remote, but remains a possibility.

    I would take the lowest dose possible and monitor your symptoms carefully. You have to weigh the benefits that you get from this drug with the risks. The risks seem very low. I would hate to see you fall into a major depression while pregnant - that's not good for the unborn fetus either. Plus, you will be more prone to a postpartum depression, so it is important that you stay on your meds. Discuss all of this with your doctor.
    Last edit by fiestynurse on Feb 21, '04
  4. by   Dave ARNP
    No Ob/Gyn I know gives Cylert or Wellbutrin during pregnancy.

    Cylert ESPECIALLY!

    Dave
  5. by   loriLPN
    if the end justifies the means......
    also, just a reminder- i don't know what setting you work in but do not handle crushed tablets of proscar....i did several times a day for critical months of my pregnancy with a male child (proscar only causes defects in male fetuses) and it only dawned on me in my 9th month what i had been doing. the kid is fine, but you never know. your kid will probably be healthy and your problems still controlled but that is still a scarey decision to make and with all the reassurance in the world you won't feel ok about it until you see he is fine....
  6. by   fiestynurse
    Shoelace - I still think that you must be very careful going off your psych meds while pregnant. You say that these meds "changed your life" and when you have attempted to go off them in the past you "revert back to the old feelings." That concerns me! I have cared for many pregnant women who have stayed on their critical meds while pregnant, including their psych meds. You need to discuss your concerns with your Ob doctor. You are currently pregnant, right? Or are you planning on becoming pregnant soon?
  7. by   shoelace
    Quote from fiestynurse
    Shoelace - I still think that you must be very careful going off your psych meds while pregnant. You say that these meds "changed your life" and when you have attempted to go off them in the past you "revert back to the old feelings." That concerns me! I have cared for many pregnant women who have stayed on their critical meds while pregnant, including their psych meds. You need to discuss your concerns with your Ob doctor. You are currently pregnant, right? Or are you planning on becoming pregnant soon?
    I am so torn!! No, I am not currently pregnant. I want to do as much research as possible so I can make an informed choice. I am not taking this lightly. It's very important to me that I do the right thing. I will certainly talk to my OB before deciding.
    I want to stay happy and functional during prenancy, but not at the cost of birth defects or disability caused by my lack of, I dunno, willpower. To stick it out 10 months or so. Before I started the meds, my thoughts and life inside my head was fairly miserable, but I was functional, going to school full-time and holding down 2 part-time jobs. After starting them, my outlook improved dramatically, all didn't seem for naught anymore, and with Cylert, I made Dean's list and my concentration was so much better. While I don't consider Cylert to be essential for a happy existence, it does help noticeably, especially at work. It really "tames" all of the thoughts that go through my head at warp-speed.

    Regardless, the one that worries me the most is the Wellbutrin. Not taking Cylert will be inconvenient. Not taking Wellbutrin is potentially disasterous.
    I guess I could go off it and just go back on if it gets really bad. At least I would have tried, and maybe I could even make it through the 1st trimester (I know the most crucial development happens then).

    Thanks, everyone, for responding.
  8. by   fiestynurse
    It is very responsible and admirable of you that you are thinking of these things BEFORE you get pregnant. I think things will work out fine for you.

    Best wishes!
  9. by   urworthit4
    What does anybody know about taking effexor xr during pregnancy? Has there been many updated information on this and the effects it could have on a unborn child? Would love any feedback or information on this matter.
  10. by   BabyNurse Kim
    "I want to stay happy and functional during prenancy, but not at the cost of birth defects or disability caused by my lack of, I dunno, willpower."

    [font=Comic Sans MS]I hope you don't think that needing psych meds is a result of lack of willpower! A chemical imbalance in the brain is just as much a medical problem deserving of medication as diabetes or heart disease.

    [font=Comic Sans MS]Good luck with your decision. I think that your OB will be the best source of info for you.

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