Mental Health Home > Vivactil and Pregnancy
In animal studies on Vivactil and pregnancy, the antidepressant did not cause problems to the fetus. While most healthcare providers recommend using newer antidepressants (since Vivactil is an older drug that hasn't been studied extensively), they may still prescribe Vivactil if the benefits to the mother outweigh the risks to the unborn child. If you are using Vivactil and pregnancy occurs, let your healthcare provider know immediately.
For women who are pregnant, Vivactil® (protriptyline hydrochloride) may not be safe. This is based on animal studies that looked at the effects of the drug during pregnancy.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) uses a category system to classify the possible risks to a fetus when a specific medicine is taken during pregnancy. Although the FDA has not given Vivactil a pregnancy risk classification (as is common with older medications), other sources have suggested that the risk to the fetus posed by Vivactil is low. In animal studies, Vivactil doses up to 10 times greater than the recommended human dose did not cause any problems in pregnant animals. However, little is known about how Vivactil may affect pregnant humans.
Most healthcare providers recommend using newer antidepressants instead, which have been more thoroughly studied in pregnancy. However, your healthcare provider may recommend that you take Vivactil during pregnancy if the benefits to you and the fetus outweigh the risks to the fetus. In fact, recent studies have suggested that not treating depression in the mother may actually be more harmful to a baby than exposure to antidepressants.
If you are taking Vivactil and pregnancy occurs, or if you are thinking about becoming pregnant while taking the drug, let your healthcare provider know. He or she will consider both the benefits and risks of using the drug during pregnancy before making a recommendation for your particular situation.