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Depakote, taken for epilepsy and migraine headache, injures fetal IQ

The New England Journal of Medicine published a study this month documenting the fact that children born to women who took Depakote (valproate) scored lower on IQ tests administered at age three.  The children scored 9 points lower than children of women taking other antiseizure medications.  Only about one-half of the women taking Depakote suffer from epilepsy.  The five-year study followed 300 pregnant women and 258 children, including 53 who took Depakote.  IQ correlated closely with mothers' IQs, except among moms taking Depakote.  The mean IQ of children taking other anti-seizure meds was almost 101, but only 92 for children whose mothers took valproate.  Doctors confirmed that Depakote should never be the first drug of choice for a pregnant mother.

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