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Old 03-17-2009, 04:31 PM   #1
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Infant withdrawal from antidepressant???

We have a brand new 11 day old daughter from adoption. Her BM took Celexa during her pregnancy. I talked to our pediatrician, BM's OB and the hospitals neonatologist before birth about withdrawal and they all said it is rare.....OK now she is born and they are all full of &*%$. I have read a lot on the infant withdrawals and she fits it all except tremors. She had respiratory distress at birth and was in the NICU for 4 days. She has very tight limbs and is very irritable!!!! she has very restless sleep and did I mention she is very irritable!!!! She also has a hard time eating. I am breastfeeding and she doesn't have patience sometimes for the milk to come down. All of these are signs of infant withdrawal from Celexa. She does like the Moby wrap and it calms her down alot. Has anyone had an infant with withdrawal from anything? If so, how do you calm them down? How long does it last? The internet says about 2 weeks.....hurry up 2 weeks!!!
Thanks in advance.
God doesn't give us patience... He gives us reasons to be patient...mine is named Sarah!

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Old 03-17-2009, 08:12 PM   #2
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Re: Infant withdrawal from antidepressant???

the time it takes to get out of her system (if it is withdraw) will depend on how much she was taking, for how long, and when her last dose was before the birth.
My son went through withdraw while in NICU - he had to be given morphine to sedate him (he kept pulling out his PICC lines) and then methadone to get off the morphine....then he had to get off the methadone - it was a mess. The whole process too maybe 10 days though - but he was only on the morphine for about 16 days, then the methadone for 4 days to wean him down, then 6 days or so of hell on wheels but he was in NICU so they got to deal with that. Oddly enough, there was a male nurse who would work 16's just to spend more time with my son while he was detoxing (they REALLY bonded and this nurse typically did 8's while the others did 12's) and he would wear him in a wrap, skin to skin for his while 16hrs. He was still hooked up to the monitors and all that, the nurse would just take over care of the 3 infants beside my son on that side. It was the only comforting thing for my baby at the time, I couldn't wear him because MY scent and MY voice would excite him and his heart would stop. He has respiratory distress from my gestational diabetes and pre-e.
Many withdraw symptoms can be explained by other things. How was BM's health during the pregnancy? Where there complications? Was she on other meds or is there a chance she was smoking or drinking or..other things? Its got to be really hard with an adopted baby because you can't know 100% of what's happened with that pregnancy when you're not the one carrying the baby.
Skin to skin contact is amazing for babies - and for your milk supply Also, do you have a pump? Maybe you can pump until let down, then let her latch so she can have that comfort quickly while she's going through this? As hard as it is for her, imagine how she's feeling! Poor baby but...the benefit must have outweighed the risk (especially since it was a small chance). I know it did for me in my pregnancy - crazy, stressed, depressed, anxious mom? Or calm, together mom with prozac and a slight chance of the baby having issues? tough choices, but you do whats best at the time, KWIM? I hope it all gets worked out and she's a happy and healthy little blessing once this is over!
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Old 03-18-2009, 09:33 AM   #3
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Re: Infant withdrawal from antidepressant???

Thanks for the reply. I got to be close to BM during pregnancy. We met each other at work and she approached me about adopting her baby way back in August. As far as her health goes, it wasn't exactly good. She had gestational diabetes, was always sick with something, sinus infection, cold, general maladies etc. As far as the antidepressants, I was aware of that and was OK with what ever the doc wanted to do, I just wanted to educate myself to the facts of what would happen after birth. The birth was complicated by fetal distress of unknown cause. She had went to Triage for some contractions (not changing her cervix so false labor) but while she was there, baby had a heartrate of 195 and very flat. We had an emergent C/S (would have been a repeat anyways). We had to wait for another C/S to get done and then the doc didn't even wait for the scrub tech to get set up before going back for ours. Sarah was born with severe grunting, flaring and retracting and went straight to NICU. NICU was great with letting me hold her after she was off CPAP and letting me do skin to skin, which she loves, and still does. I will get us each nakey and do that during the day.
I am kind of worried though, she really likes to use the breast for comfort and going to sleep and such and I have to go back to work on Sunday and DH doesn't have the right equipment... Any suggestions for how to make that work??? Sometimes I feel like I have never had a newborn before... DS was a good baby and I had my mom to help. DD was an even better baby and even went to sleep by herself with a warm rice sock in her blankie. Sarah is very particular on her routines. We just have to get to know each other better.
Thanks again.
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Old 03-18-2009, 02:17 PM   #4
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Re: Infant withdrawal from antidepressant???

My dd was on morphine and then methadone, too, in the hospital. They weaned her off the methadone slowly, but it took a good week and a half to get her all the way off. Not fun! She was soooo upset (she was 10 mos old at the time) and cried very easily; it didn't help that I couldn't pick her up and hold her. That was the only withdrawal symptom she displayed. She had been on the morphine for almost two months. I hope everything goes well with your new little one.
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Old 03-18-2009, 09:33 PM   #5
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Re: Infant withdrawal from antidepressant???

My twins had withdrawl from my anti-depressant. I'm on Celexa too. I noticed that for them, it was mostly once we were bfing that we had problems. They were born at 35 weeks so sort of just laid around in the NICU for 3 weeks and didn't fuss. But once we got home and I was able to bf them all the time, I noticed that when my meds were starting to wear off they became terrors and just got beyond fussy. I had to lower my dose of the Celexa to avoid messing with them so much. I think it took them about a month or two to get used to it even though I had benn taking the med throughout pregnancy. There is a difference between womb exposure and bfing exposure.
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Old 04-01-2009, 07:47 AM   #6
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Re: Infant withdrawal from antidepressant???

DS #1 had withdrawal from paxil, DS #2 did not. So it is probably not as "rare" as they say, but it is not every single child.

I will say that we're not entirely certain if that's what my DS #1 had, b/c he was premature (which could've caused the breathing issue), born of preeclampsia (mag sulfate can cause problems). He never had muscle tone issues or tremors. He had breathing issues at birth, sucking/breastfeeding issues, and irritability. The classic paxil-withdrawal irritability started at 72 hrs old, and finally let up somewhere around 2.5 months old.

All I can say is that it really does let up eventually, and it will be like you have a brand new child.

The only thing that helped my DS was, just like your DD, being close to me and wrapped extremely tightly.
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