Management of antipsychotic and mood stabilizer medication in pregnancy: recommendations for antenatal care

Megan Galbally, Martien Snellen, Susan Walker, Michael Permezel

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

51 Citations (Scopus)


The aim of the present study was to develop recommendations for antenatal care and monitoring for women with bipolar disorder and schizophrenia who are on lithium carbonate, antipsychotic or anti-epileptic medication during pregnancy. A literature search and review of original research, published reviews and guidelines was undertaken for mood stabilizers and antipsychotics in pregnancy and for the management of bipolar disorder and schizophrenia in pregnancy. This information was summarized, condensed and then reviewed by representatives of psychiatry, pharmacy, paediatrics and obstetrics to produce an information booklet and subsequently monitoring recommendations and tables. A model of antenatal monitoring and care for women with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and related disorders who are maintained on psychotropic medication was developed. This included an online and published booklet for clinicians summarizing psychotropic medication in pregnancy, and lactation and monitoring tables that could be part of patient case files. These were to assist in reminding and educating staff on the need for additional monitoring and assessment above standard antenatal care for women on mood stabilizers and antipsychotic medication. Women with bipolar disorder and schizophrenia have an increased risk of complications in pregnancy from their illness and from the medications they are prescribed. A summary of the risks and a model of suggested additional monitoring during pregnancy have been developed in consultation across a number of clinical disciplines.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)99-108
Number of pages10
JournalAustralian & New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2010
Externally publishedYes


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