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Pharmacy and Medications

Methylprednisolone in early pregnancy

04/14/1997

Question:

I was recently prescribed methylprednisolone 4MG D-PAK for a rash. I later found out that I am pregnant and was pregnant while I was taking the drug. I am extremely concerned about what effects the drug may have on my unborn child and would appreciate any and all information you have on the subject.

Answer:

Methylprednisolone belongs to the class of drugs known as corticosteroids. Adequate studies on birth defects with corticosteroids have not been done in pregnant women. Animal studies have shown that corticosteroids may increase the risk of placental insufficiency, decreased intrauterine growth, cleft palate and spontaneous abortions. However, birth defects in humans have not been confirmed. In a survey of Michigan Medicaid recipients, 222 newborns had been exposed to methylprednisolone during the 1st trimester. The data collected from this survey does not show an association between methylprednisolone and birth defects. You should talk to your doctor about your concerns.

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Response by:

Jen   Hertelendy, RPh Jen Hertelendy, RPh
Formerly, Pharmacist
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati