This article is from the General Pregnancy FAQ, by swnymph@FensEnde.com (Sabrina Cuddy) with numerous contributions by others.
From: "Corrine R. Johnson" <JohnsonC@calvertgroup.com>
WHAT CAN I TAKE?
by Bruce D. Shephard, M.D.
Baby Talk, America's First Baby Magazine
>From Antacids to Tranquilizers, and everything in between, here's
what does and doesn't mix with pregnancy.
When you're pregnant, you worry about everything, from the foods you
eat to the medications you take. When it comes to using drugs --
prescription or over-the-counter medications, even alcohol and
cigarettes -- doctors urge pregnant women to use extreme caution. With
In the 1950s. the drug thalidomide, used widely as a sedative, was
found to cause serious limb deformities in thousands of babies --
approximately one-third of the babies exposed to it during early
pregnancy. As a result of this tragedy, Congress in 1962 passed new
laws requiring all drugs to be proven safe for anyone -- including
Despite the thalidomide lesson, however, many pregnant women still
exhibit a certain casualness about taking medications during
pregnancy. Many feel that because a drug is readily available, either
through prescription or over the counter, it must be safe for them to
use. But using any drug while you're pregnant requires careful
consideration -- and discussion with your doctor. Many drugs can be
subtle in their effects, causing minor anomalies instead of a major
defect. Other drugs' effects may be long-term, causing problems in an
child that don't develop until adolescence or even later. The truth is
that most birth defects have no single identifiable cause, but instead
are linked to a combination of genetic or environmental factors. But
the use -- or misuse -- of drugs in pregnancy is one contributing
factor that can be easily be avoided.