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Motherisk News: Doctor gives "voice" to fetus in debut novel about treatment of depression during pregnancy

May 7, 2014, Toronto. Prozac Baby, the debut novel by Dr. Gideon Koren, is the illustrated Diary of a Fetus who discovers that his mother intends to terminate her pregnancy because of fears that the medicine she is taking to treat depression may have harmed her baby. The novel is based on Dr. Koren's years of practice as a paediatrician and pharmacologist, and Director of the Motherisk Program at The Hospital for Sick Children. Motherisk counsels expecting women and their healthcare providers on the safety and risks of maternal use of medications during pregnancy.

Misinformation about the risk of medications in pregnancy can have dire consequences. Physicians caring for pregnant women with depression need to balance maternal well-being with potential fetal risk of antidepressants. "Prozac Baby is based on a body of research, including a Motherisk benefit-risk analysis on antidepressants use in pregnancy. That study, reprinted at the end of Prozac Baby, demonstrates that the benefit to the mother can outweigh the potential harm to the baby. But too often, women who need treatment are unnecessarily scared off it because they and the people around them - no matter how well meaning - do not consider the data," said Dr. Koren.

Proceeds from the sale of Prozac Baby, Diary of a Fetus, will go to Motherisk to support continuing research. To order, download the order form at www.motherisk.org/documents/ProzacBaby_OrderForm.pdf

Prozac Baby is also the title of Dr. Koren's keynote address at Motherisk's annual conference on May 21, 2014. The conference will be held at The Hospital for Sick Children, 555 University Avenue, Toronto. Conference program and registration details are available online at http://www.cvent.com/events/motherisk-update-2014/event-summary-709a1673682f43cfb5eaa16a52a653b9.aspx

ABOUT PROZAC BABY, DIARY OF A FETUS

Written by Dr. Gideon Koren; Illustrated by Judith Asher
Published Jan 30 2014
ISBN/EAN13: 1492990531 / 9781492990536
104 Pages; US Trade Paper; 7" x 10"
English; Full Color with Bleed
Related Categories: Medical / Gynecology & Obstetrics

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Gideon Koren MD, FRCPC, FACMT is a Canadian paediatrician, toxicologist and clinician scientist. In parallel to his academic career at The Hospital for Sick Children and the University of Toronto, Koren is a well established, award winning composer and author in his native Israel (gidikoren.com). He is a Professor of Paediatrics, Pharmacology, Pharmacy and Medical Genetics at the University of Toronto, a Visiting Professor at Tel Aviv University, and the Ivey Chair in Molecular Toxicology at Western University.

Dr. Koren is the author of over 1500 peer review papers and 15 medical books. In 1985 he founded The Motherisk Program, which he continues to direct. Motherisk counsels women, their families and health professionals on the safety-risks of drugs, chemicals, radiations and infections during pregnancy and lactation. Motherisk counsels hundreds of women and their health professionals every day. The research group headed by Koren is studying the fetal effects of drugs and chemicals, as well as the effects of medications and toxins in infants and children. Prozac Baby is his first novel.?

MEDIA CONTACT FOR PROZAC BABY:

Susan Santiago, Project Coordinator, Motherisk
416-813-8084
susan.santiago@sickkids.ca

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