During pregnancy, often females wonder, which medicine to take and which to avoid if suffering from any kind of discomfort. As the medicine taken can have effects on the health condition of the developing baby, it is important to give it a thought.
Also, testing cannot be done on a pregnant female, which is why it is not accurate to say if a medication is 100 percent safe for a pregnant female.
However, there are certain medicines which are sure to be avoided during pregnancy due to their adverse reaction.
12 Medicines To Avoid During Pregnancy
Chloramphenicol: It is an antibiotic and is usually given in the form of an injection. This can lead to serious blood disorders such as anemia, thalassemia, polycythemia vera, and white blood disorders. It can also cause a gray baby syndrome.
Ciprofloxacin and Levofloxacin: Both of these are a type of antibiotic which could cause a problem with the baby’s muscle and skeletal growth. It can also cause joint pain and nerve damage to the mother. Ciprofloxacin and levofloxacin are fluoroquinolone antibiotics, which can increase the risk of aortic tears or ruptures (1). This can lead to life-threatening bleeding. According to a study, they can also increase the chances of miscarriage (2).
Primaquine: This drug is used to treat malaria. It has been researched that it can cause damage to the developing fetus in the animal as it causes blood cell damage in a fetus (3). There is not much data on human but this drug is not recommended during pregnancy.
Sulphonamides: Sufonamindes also known as a sulfa drug, is a group of antibiotic medication. It is a drug used to treat bacterial infection and to kill germs. Sulphonamides may increase the chances of miscarriage and can cause jaundice in newborn.
Trimethoprim (primsol): Trimethoprim is also a type of antibiotic which can cause neural tube defects if taken during pregnancy. These defects affect the brain of the developing baby.
Codeine: Codeine is a painkiller. It is often purchased as a cough medication. It is a habit-forming drug and causes withdrawal symptoms in the newborn.
Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin): It is a pain killer medication and can cause serious problems which include:
- Delayed onset of labor
- Premature closing of ductus arteriosus
- Necrotizing enterocolitis
- Fetal kernicterus
- Abnormal vitamin K levels
It can be taken in small to moderate amounts in pregnancy (4). However, it is important to avoid it in the third trimester. Ibuprofen is more likely to cause heart defects in the developing baby.
Warfarin (Coumadin): Warfarin is a blood thinner and is used to treat blood clots. It can lead to birth defects. It should, therefore, be avoided during pregnancy.
Clonazepam(Klonopin): Clonazepam is used for the treatment of seizures and panic disorders. Taking it during pregnancy can lead to withdrawal symptoms in the newborn.
Lorazepam (Ativan): It is a medicine for mental health disorders which can cause birth defects and life-threatening withdrawal symptoms in the baby after birth.
Isotretinoin: This drug is used to treat acne and is not recommended to be used during pregnancy. If already taking the medication the female to should wait for around 6-12 months before conceiving as it can lead to congenital birth defects.
Thalidomide (Thalomid): This medicine is taken for a type of skin disease and multiple myeloma. It can prevent proper growth of fetus resulting in horrifying birth defects. It, therefore, should be avoided during pregnancy.
If already taking medication for certain illness, inform your doctor and take the necessary guidance. Also, if you want to start a medicine ask your doctor for the safest drug to be taken for the illness.