From my perspective, the use of ANY prescription medication during pregnancy is of concern. However, with time it seems like society and medicine are becoming increasingly accepting of its use.
Environmental Working Groups’ (http://www.ewg.org/) 10 Americans study was immensely eye opening view on just how many chemicals the developing baby is exposed to. While this particular study looked at environmental chemicals, it demonstrated beyond a doubt that the placenta is not the great, wonderful filter we thought it was. The vast majority of what mom is exposed to the developing baby is exposed to.
Some of these exposures we have an understanding of. The vast majority of the 88,000 chemicals allowed by the EPA have no studies. The same holds true for the FDA and prescription drugs. In general, we have very little data on what effects prescription drugs have on the baby’s development. Without a doubt, because of our lack of understanding and the vital importance of the topic at hand, the only answer is to err on the side of caution.
I understand that some medications may be necessary during pregnancy. But this study finds that, over the past 3 decades, prescription use during first trimester has increased 60%. 60% increase. What drugs exactly are women taking that they didn’t need 30 years ago? The use of 4 or more medications at a time tripled.
Even more frightening is the finding that, by 2008, a whopping 50% of women (out of 30,000 surveyed) had taken a medication during the first trimester. That’s half for those of you not good at math.
This suggests that the permissive nature of the use of pharmaceutical drugs has bled over into pregnancy, which used to be the realm of avoid medications at all costs. The long term ramifications of this chemical exposure to our child has yet to be played out, but I can guarantee it’s not going to be pretty.