Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Risk of birth defects among women who take antihistamines in pregnancy

Date:
September 16, 2013
Source:
Boston University Medical Center
Summary:
Antihistamines are a group of medications that are used to treat various conditions, including allergies and nausea and vomiting. Some antihistamines require a prescription, but most are available over-the-counter, and both prescription and OTC antihistamines are often used by women during pregnancy. Until recently, little information was available to women and their health care providers on the possible risks and relative safety of these medications in pregnancy, particularly when it came to specific birth defects.

Antihistamines are a group of medications that are used to treat various conditions, including allergies and nausea and vomiting. Some antihistamines require a prescription, but most are available over-the-counter (OTC), and both prescription and OTC antihistamines are often used by women during pregnancy. Until recently, little information was available to women and their health care providers on the possible risks and relative safety of these medications in pregnancy, particularly when it came to specific birth defects.

A new study from Boston University's Slone Epidemiology Center, based on interviews with more than 20,000 new mothers, now provides important information for many of these medicines. The researchers considered antihistamines that had been suggested in earlier studies to increase risks of certain defects, and they also considered other possible risks that might not have been identified in the past. Where there was sufficient information in the study data, the authors found no evidence to support suggestions of risk that had been found in earlier studies. In considering possible risks that had not been identified by others, the investigators found very few suggestions that any given medicine might be linked to an increase risk of a specific birth defect, and though these few deserve further research attention, these findings may have been due to chance. The study currently appears in Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In Practice.

Dr. Allen Mitchell, the study's director, noted that "we were fortunate that our study was able to consider commonly-used antihistamines that were available OTC as well as those available only with a prescription. While our findings provide reassurance about the relative safety of many of these medications in relation to a number of common birth defects, more information is needed. As is the case for all types of medications, women who are pregnant or may become pregnant should consult with their health care provider before taking any medicines, whether they are prescribed or OTC."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Boston University Medical Center. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Qian Li, Allen A. Mitchell, Martha M. Werler, Wai-Ping Yau, Sonia Hernαndez-Dνaz. Assessment of Antihistamine Use in Early Pregnancy and Birth Defects. The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In Practice, 2013; DOI: 10.1016/j.jaip.2013.07.008

Cite This Page:

Boston University Medical Center. "Risk of birth defects among women who take antihistamines in pregnancy." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 16 September 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/09/130916131131.htm>.
Boston University Medical Center. (2013, September 16). Risk of birth defects among women who take antihistamines in pregnancy. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/09/130916131131.htm
Boston University Medical Center. "Risk of birth defects among women who take antihistamines in pregnancy." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/09/130916131131.htm (accessed July 29, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Deadly Ebola Virus Threatens West Africa

Deadly Ebola Virus Threatens West Africa

AP (July 28, 2014) — West African nations and international health organizations are working to contain the largest Ebola outbreak in history. It's one of the deadliest diseases known to man, but the CDC says it's unlikely to spread in the U.S. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

AP (July 28, 2014) — A bipartisan deal to improve veterans health care would authorize at least $15 billion in emergency spending to fix a veterans program scandalized by long patient wait times and falsified records. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Two Americans Contract Ebola in Liberia

Two Americans Contract Ebola in Liberia

Reuters - US Online Video (July 28, 2014) — Two American aid workers in Liberia test positive for Ebola while working to combat the deadliest outbreak of the virus ever. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

AP (July 28, 2014) — Classes are being offered nationwide to encourage African Americans to learn about cooking fresh foods based on traditional African cuisine. The program is trying to combat obesity, heart disease and other ailments often linked to diet. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins