Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Depression Is a Dilemma for Women in Pregnancy

When Sherean Malekzadeh Allen of Marietta, Ga., learned she was pregnant, she was 43, had been married for two years, had gone through two miscarriages and had all but given up hope of having a baby.

But instead of being overjoyed, Ms. Allen was immobilized: panic-ridden, nauseated, listless and thoroughly depressed. She could not rouse herself to go to work in the marketing business she founded and ran, or even get through the newspaper.

And she faced the pregnant woman’s quintessential dilemma: take drugs that might pose a risk to the developing baby, or struggle through an anguishing pregnancy that could harm the baby in other ways?

“Every single thing you put in your body when you’re pregnant, you wonder, ‘Oh, my God, am I growing my baby an extra finger?’ ” Ms. Allen said. “I was worried that I would hurt the baby if I took the pills, and I was worried I would hurt the baby if I didn’t.”


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