Risk and benefit of drug use during pregnancy

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

60 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Environmental teratogenic factors (e.g. alcohol) are preventable. We focus our analysis on human teratogenic drugs which are not used frequently during pregnancy. The previous human teratogenic studies had serious methodological problems, e.g. the first trimester concept is outdated because environmental teratogens cannot induce congenital abnormalities in the first month of gestation. In addition, teratogens usually cause specific congenital abnormalities or syndromes. Finally, the importance of chemical structures, administrative routes and reasons for treatment at the evaluation of medicinal products was not considered. On the other hand, in the so-called case-control epidemiological studies in general recall bias was not limited. These biases explain that the teratogenic risk of drugs is exaggerated, while the benefit of medicine use during pregnancy is underestimated. Thus, a better balance is needed between the risk and benefit of drug treatments during pregnancy. Of course, we have to do our best to reduce the risk of teratogenic drugs as much as possible, however, it is worth stressing the preventive effect of drugs for maternal diseases (e.g. diabetes mellitus and hyperthermia) related congenital abnormalities. Copyright

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)100-106
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Journal of Medical Sciences
Volume2
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1 2005

Keywords

  • Congenital abnormalities
  • Congenital abnormality
  • Critical period
  • Human teratogenic drugs
  • Preventive effect of drugs
  • Recall bias

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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