Depression Home > Cymbalta and Pregnancy
There are some situations where it may not be safe to take Cymbalta, and pregnancy is one of them. The FDA has classified Cymbalta as a pregnancy Category C medication, meaning that it does appear to cause side effects to the fetus in animal studies. When Cymbalta was given to pregnant rats, the baby rats weighed less and were less likely to survive. However, your healthcare provider may still prescribe Cymbalta if the benefits outweigh the risks.
Cymbalta and Pregnancy: An OverviewCymbalta® (duloxetine hydrochloride) is a pregnancy Category C medicine, meaning that Cymbalta may not be safe for use in pregnant women.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) uses a pregnancy category system to classify the possible risks to a fetus when a specific medicine is taken during pregnancy. Pregnancy Category C is given to medicines that show side effects to the fetus in animal studies, but no human studies in pregnant women have been done. A pregnancy Category C medicine may still be given to pregnant women if the healthcare provider believes that the benefits to the pregnant woman outweigh the possible risks to the unborn child.
In animal studies, when rabbits were given Cymbalta during early pregnancy, the baby rabbits weighed less. When rats were given Cymbalta during pregnancy and breastfeeding, the baby rats weighed less and were less likely to survive. In humans, there have been reports of problems in newborn babies born to mothers who were taking medications similar to Cymbalta. These problems can be as minor as irritability or as serious as seizures or lung problems.
It is important to note that depression in the mother may also not be healthy for a baby. Therefore, Cymbalta may be given to pregnant women if the healthcare provider believes that the benefits to the pregnant woman outweigh any possible risks to the unborn child.