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Pregnancy

Is Susten safe?

01/22/2008

Question:

I`m 42 years and about 10 weeks, 4 days or so pregnant. When I visited my gynecologist at about 6 weeks pregnancy, he put me on Susten 400mg to insert vaginally. So I`ve been taking it since Dec 14 and now about 10 weeks, 4 days pregnant and I`m to take it till 12 weeks. I`ve had a previous miscarriage, but had a healthy baby boy in 2006. I now read Susten isn`t safe for the baby as it may cause fetal abnormalities and even death. Please advice on Susten and what harm it may do. I did an ultrasound at 8 weeks and there was a heartbeat of 167bpm. But since then, I`ve not gone back to the doctor nor done any other scans. I feel scared since I really don`t have any pregnancy symptoms (which I also didn`t have last time eg. nausea, vomiting etc.) and I haven`t added any weight yet. I read at about 10 weeks or so I should have added about 12 pounds. What harm can Susten do and is it already too late to reverse any damage that may have been done? Do you know of anyone who has used Susten and has delivered healthy babies with no abnormalities? Also, is it true that if a miscarriage is to occur, it will still happen even if I`m taking Susten?

Answer:

Susten is a form of progesterone and is generally considered safe in pregnancy. The rates of malformations is low and is equivalent to the baseline (i.e. no drug use in pregnancy) rate. It is typically given to women if there is concern for progesterone deficiency (such as post-IVF or a luteal phase defect). Progesterone is usually given until 12 weeks of pregnancy because that is when the placenta takes over production from the ovary.

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Response by:

Arthur T Ollendorff, MD Arthur T Ollendorff, MD
Associate Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati