Pregnancy: There are limited data from the use of vortioxetine in pregnant women.
Studies in animals have shown reproductive toxicity (see Pharmacology: Toxicology: Preclinical safety data under Actions).
The following symptoms may occur in the newborn after maternal use of a serotonergic medicinal product in the later stages of pregnancy: respiratory distress, cyanosis, apnoea, seizures, temperature instability, feeding difficulty, vomiting, hypoglycaemia, hypertonia, hypotonia, hyperreflexia, tremor, jitteriness, irritability, lethargy, constant crying, somnolence and difficulty sleeping. These symptoms could be due to either discontinuation effects or excess serotonergic activity. In the majority of instances, such complications began immediately or soon (<24 hours) after delivery.
Epidemiological data suggest that the use of SSRIs in pregnancy, particularly in late pregnancy, may increase the risk of persistent pulmonary hypertension in the newborn (PPHN). Although no studies have investigated the association of PPHN with vortioxetine treatment, this potential risk cannot be ruled out taking into account the related mechanism of action (increase in serotonin concentrations).
Brintellix should only be administered to pregnant women if the expected benefits outweigh the potential risk to the foetus.
Observational data have provided evidence of an increased risk (less than 2-fold) of postpartum haemorrhage following exposure to an SSRI or SNRI within the month prior to birth. Although no studies have investigated an association between vortioxetine treatment and postpartum haemorrhage, there is a potential risk, taking into account the related mechanism of action (See Precautions).
Breast-feeding: Available data in animals have shown excretion of vortioxetine/vortioxetine metabolites in milk. It is expected that vortioxetine will be excreted into human milk (see Pharmacology: Toxicology: Preclinical safety data under Actions).
A risk to the breast-feeding child cannot be excluded.
A decision must be made whether to discontinue breast-feeding or to discontinue/abstain from Brintellix treatment taking into account the benefit of breast-feeding for the child and the benefit of therapy for the woman.
Fertility: Fertility studies in male and female rats showed no effect of vortioxetine on fertility, sperm quality or mating performance (see Pharmacology: Toxicology: Preclinical safety data under Actions).
Human case reports with medicinal products from the related pharmacological class of antidepressants (SSRIs) have shown an effect on sperm quality that is reversible. Impact on human fertility has not been observed so far.