Watch Drugs to Avoid in Pregnancy on Medflix 🎥
16 Oct 2023 • Doctors, what's the first thing that comes to your mind when you hear:
It brings painful flashbacks of children with underdeveloped limbs and facial malformations smiling back at us, unaware of the struggles that lie ahead of them.♿️
And what's worse, such a disaster was a result of an easily preventable error of consuming thalidomide during pregnancy. 😔
But no one ever warned these mothers about the side-effects, simply because both drug manufacturers and healthcare professionals were uninformed of the effects of a drug on the foetus in the womb.😨
Undoubtedly, this was a grave mistake and a gut - wrenching error that changed the way we look at medications forever.📌
Thalidomide is a compound that was developed in the 1950s and by July 1956 it was licensed for over-the-counter sale.
It was originally intended to be used as a sedative or tranquilliser but was soon used for treating colds, flu, nausea and morning sickness in pregnancy.
In 1958, thalidomide was produced in the United Kingdom under the name of Distaval and to our surprise and impending horror, this was the advertisement said:
"Distaval can be given with complete safety to pregnant women and nursing mothers without adverse effect on mother or child."
We need to acknowledge the fact that in the 1950s, scientists did not know that a drug could pass through the placental barrier and impact the foetus in the womb and hence, the use of medications during pregnancy was not strictly controlled.
As for thalidomide, no tests were done involving pregnant women.🤦♀️
Now we know that Thalidomide causes phocomelia involving shortened limbs along with sight loss, hearing loss, facial paralysis, and internal organ damage.
The first time the link between thalidomide and phocomelia was made public, was by Dr.William McBride in 1961, subsequently leading to its withdrawal in the same year.
In these five short years that thalidomide was available, over 10,000 babies were affected by the drug globally.🤯
Even though thalidomide has a bad history, it has shown some positive results in treating leprosy and certain cancers like multiple myeloma.
As a matter of fact, the thalidomide scandal has paved the way for safer drugs in pregnancy.🤰🏻
Our patients trust us and are dependent on our care and we need to make responsible choices especially when it comes to prescribing medications, particularly during pregnancy.
So you must be wondering...
Which drugs should be avoided in pregnancy?!🤷♂️
Don't worry...We have got you covered!🤗
🔗Click here to watch the session on Drugs to Avoid in Pregnancy by Dr. Swati Gawai right here on Medflix💛.