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HomeMental HealthPrenatal Lithium Publicity: Neuroimaging Yields Reassuring Outcomes

Prenatal Lithium Publicity: Neuroimaging Yields Reassuring Outcomes

For a lot of ladies with bipolar dysfunction, lithium is an efficient temper stabilizer. Whereas many research have explored the teratogenic results of lithium, there may be at the moment very restricted info on the long term results of prenatal lithium publicity on kids’s neurodevelopment. In a latest examine, Poels and colleagues from the Erasmus College Medical Middle within the Netherlands have used neuroimaging to higher perceive the consequences of prenatal lithium publicity on the creating mind.  

This examine included 63 kids born to ladies with a analysis of bipolar spectrum dysfunction: 30 with and 33 with out prenatal publicity to lithium. Contributors have been evaluated at 8 to 13 years of age utilizing structural MRI and diffusion tensor imaging with a view to assess world mind quantity and white matter integrity. As comparability information from the final inhabitants, the researchers used mind imaging from contributors within the Era R examine (N = 3243).

In evaluating lithium-exposed to non-exposed kids born to moms with bipolar dysfunction, this examine discovered no statistically vital associations between prenatal lithium publicity and structural mind measures, though there was a non-significant pattern towards decreased subcortical grey matter quantity. After they in contrast lithium-exposed kids to these within the normal inhabitants, lithium-exposed kids confirmed decreased subcortical grey and cortical white matter volumes.

That is the primary examine to analyze the affect of prenatal lithium publicity on mind construction in kids utilizing neuroimaging. Though small in dimension, the examine supplies reassuring information, observing no statistically vital associations between lithium publicity throughout being pregnant and mind construction or world white matter integrity. There was a small — however statistically non-significant — discount in subcortical grey matter quantity in kids with prenatal lithium publicity.

The power of this examine is that the first comparability group consisted of lithium-unexposed kids born to moms with bipolar dysfunction. This comparability helps to reduce a few of the variations between the uncovered and unexposed kids that could be associated to psychiatric sickness within the mom. This, nonetheless, doesn’t remove all of the variations; moms taking lithium throughout being pregnant had earlier onset of sickness and extra lifetime episodes, and have been extra prone to have decrease family revenue and fewer schooling. Thus, we can’t rule out the contribution of sickness severity and related demographic elements to the outcomes noticed on this examine.

Underscoring the significance of a rigorously chosen management group is the discovering that, when in comparison with kids within the normal inhabitants, the researchers noticed variations in mind construction between lithium-exposed and non-exposed kids born to moms with bipolar dysfunction and kids within the normal inhabitants cohort. These variations could also be associated to genetic variables, household atmosphere, or unmeasured exposures throughout being pregnant. 

The findings of the present examine align with earlier research of neuropsychological functioning. In an earlier examine carried out in the identical cohort, Poels and colleagues (2021) in contrast 56 lithium-exposed kids to 43 non-lithium-exposed kids from moms with a bipolar spectrum dysfunction utilizing validated neuropsychological exams (NEPSY-II-NL and SON-R 6–40) to evaluate IQ and 6 completely different neuropsychological domains: consideration and government functioning, social notion, reminiscence and studying, sensorimotor, visuospatial processing and language. General, they discovered no statistically vital affiliation between prenatal lithium publicity and IQ or neuropsychological functioning.

Ruta Nonacs, MD PhD

Poels EMP, Kamperman AM, Bijma HH, Honig A, van Kamp IL, Kushner SA, Hoogendijk WJG, Bergink V, White T. Mind growth after intrauterine publicity to lithium: A magnetic resonance imaging examine in school-age kids.  Bipolar Disord. 2023 Jan 12. Poels EMP, Schrijver L, White TJH, et al. The impact of prenatal lithium publicity on the neuropsychological growth of the kid. Bipolar Disord. 2021; 24:310-319.

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