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Asthma in Pregnancy (cont.)

Use of Asthma Medication During Pregnancy

Asthma medications usually are taken in the same stepwise sequence you would take them in before pregnancy.

When your health-care provider considers your use of a drug during pregnancy, he or she reflects on the following questions:

  • Is the drug necessary?
  • What information is available to assess the effect of the drug on the fetus?
  • What is the effect of the drug on the pregnancy, including labor, delivery, and breastfeeding?
  • Does the dose or dosing interval of the drug need to be altered because of the pregnancy?
  • Do the risks of the drug outweigh the benefits?

We lack information on the effects of many drugs on the fetus. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) classifies drugs for use in pregnancy according to these categories:

  • A: Safe in pregnancy
  • B: Usually safe but benefits must outweigh the risks
  • C: Safety for use during pregnancy has not been established
  • D: Unsafe in pregnancy
  • X: Contraindicated in pregnancy

A host of medications are listed in category C because there is not significant study data about the medication in pregnancy. Several medications listed as category C are generally regarded as safe, or safe during certain stages of pregnancy. You may need to discuss your medications and any concerns about them with your health-care provider.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 8/15/2014
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