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What You Need to Know about Antibiotics and Birth Defects

Submitted by jrlaw on Nov 18th, 2009

As reported on InjuryBoard.com, a recent study by the Centers for Disease Control has revealed a new worry for pregnant women. The study is the first substantial one of its kind to take on the possible problems associated with taking antibiotics during pregnancy. Until recently, there was little known about the effects of antibiotics on a developing baby, but this new information points to links between antibiotics and birth defects.

It is important to note that not all antibiotics have been tied to birth defects. Two types of antibiotics used to treat urinary tract infections, namely sulfa drugs and nitrofurantoins, are implicated in the study. The sulfa drugs have been associated with defects including rare brain and heart issues and shortened limbs; the nitrofurantoins also carry the risk of heart troubles as well as cleft palate. The indication is that the threat of birth defects is two to three times greater for women who have taken these kinds of antibiotics in pregnancy, as those who have not. As explained in an article on BabyCenter.com, antibiotics such as penicillin are still usually considered safe for pregnant women.
Normally, dangerous drugs are not prescribed during pregnancy and are only considered when the risk of not taking them outweighs the potential threat of the medication. Sometimes though, medications are not thoroughly tested and do cause harm. If your child has been affected by unsafe antibiotics that you took during pregnancy it may be a product liability issue. We have experience in these kinds of cases and can offer you a free assessment of your case.