- 3 years ago
- Wedding: September 2016
Hi everyone! DH and I are not yet TTC, but plan to start at the end of the summer (we just returned from Antigua two weeks ago and are taking Zika precautions – so we’re waiting at least 6 months).
Just over two weeks ago, I began taking Escitalopram (generic for Lexapro) for the horrible, crippling anxiety I have been experiencing. DH and I bought a house last summer, and that paired with our wedding had me under a lot of stress, which ended up causing a lot of anxiety for me. We moved into our house and our wedding finally came, and I felt much better – for about a week. A week after our wedding, my uncle, who we were very close with, died of a heart attack in his sleep. It was obviously very shocking, and this brought back my anxiety in full swing. If you’ve read my previous post about my anxiety, you know that I have experienced many tragic deaths, all of which resulted in me experiencing anxiety which usually goes away within a few months. I had never been on any SSRIs, but have taken Lorazepam as needed for panic.
This time around though, I just could not shake it. It was starting to interfere with everything – I began having many different physical symptoms, including tingling in my right arm and leg, depersonalization (scary – lasted for about 2.5 weeks), random bouts of dizziness blurred vision, etc. All of this had me in a constant state of panic, and my PC ended up referring me to a neurologist. He suspected MS, which added even more stress and worry. I had a battery of tests, including MRI and nerve conduction – both normal. I felt slightly better after this, but realized after multiple breakdowns at work that the physical and mental symptoms were just too much for me to handle on my own. I decided to speak with my PC and he prescribed Escitalopram as well as therapy (I had previously been in therapy for my anxiety, stopped going about 6 years ago because I was feeling better). The last time I had experienced anxiety like this was in 2008 after my and aunt uncle (married) had both passed away from cancer. Since then, I’ve pretty much been fine – so I AM able to move on from the anxiety with time, but it felt much more intense than anything I’ve ever experienced this time around.
Now, I am already feeling better than I have been. It takes several weeks to reap the full benefits of the medication, but I do feel much better than I have with very few side effects (knock on wood!). My plan is to give the medication a try for at least 6 months to get through this rough patch. My concern is getting pregnant while on the medication. I know that it’s a Class C drug, meaning that risk to a fetus cannot be ruled out. I have spoken to my doctor about this and he said that it’s okay to be on while pregnant, and that the anxiety itself can be more harmful to a baby than the drug. I know that if I decide to stay on the medication and end up getting pregnant, it’ll be a hard decision in regards to whether or not I should stay on it while pregnant. If anything ended up being wrong with our baby, I would never forgive myself.
Basically, I’m just looking for anyone who has had experience on Lexapro/Escitalopram (or any SSRI for that matter) while pregnant, and the outcome for your baby. I do plan on revisiting this topic with my PC as well as my OB/Gyn prior to TTC. Thank you!