Drugs That May Cause Birth Defect Side Effects
It is estimated that five million pregnancies occur in the U.S. yearly. During pregnancy medications may be prescribed to women for for various reasons, or may be already prescribed before a woman becomes prenant. Knowing if a drug and it’s side effects is safe for mother and child during pregnancy is very important.
Pregnancy Categories outlined by The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has outlined pregnancy categories to determine if a drugs side effects may cause birth defects are as follows – A, B, C, D or X – which is used to denote their safety to a woman and her fetus.
Category A – No fetal risk shown in studies. Few drugs listed in Category A. Prenatal vitamins are an example.
Category B – No fetal risk shown in studies, but findings not based human studies. Effects may have been demonstrated in animals, but not in well-controlled human studies.
Category C – Drugs in this category have been shown to be harmful in animal studies but no studies have been conducted on pregnant humans. Many medications that a pregnant women may use use fall into this category.
Category D – Evidence of fetal risk, but benefits are thought to outweigh risks.
Category X – Fetal risks outweighs any benefit.
Below is a list of drugs that may cause birth defects if taking during pregnancy. Please consult your health care provider about the safety of continuing these medications during pregnancy. The FDA has highlighted several resources that can help you find out more about the effects a medication might have when taken during pregnancy.