If you are planning to start a family or are already pregnant, you need to know whether your prescription medications may cause harm to your unborn child. Likewise, if your child was born with preventable health problems, receiving compensation might depend on whether the medications your doctor prescribed are to blame.
Understanding which drugs have these risks and how to find such information can empower families to make informed decisions.
The relationship between medications and birth defects
The March of Dimes reports that 3% of babies in the United States are born with a birth defect. However, this rate may apply only to women who take prescription drugs. In a recent scientific study, the rate of birth defects among a sample of women who did not take medications was only 0.44%.
Which medications cause birth defects
To determine whether a certain medication is safe to consume during pregnancy, you can take the following steps:
- Consult a pharmacist
- Review medication labels and inserts
- Use only reliable sources such as the National Library of Medicine’s Drugs and Lactation Database or the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website in your research
- Join support groups of parents whose children suffered damage from prescription drugs
Do not take one person’s word for it that a medication is safe.
The lack of knowledge about medication-induced birth defects
Healthcare professionals do not always have complete information about the potential risks of medications during pregnancy. Reasons for this lack of knowledge might include limited existing research on pregnant women or a doctor’s failure to stay current on emerging data in the medical field.
Always prioritize open communication with your healthcare team and keep asking questions until you get the answers you seek.