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Jackie Fedeli
Jackie Fedeli
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New York Senator Calls for Clear Pregnancy Warning Labels

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The anti-epilepsy drug, Topamax, made headlines over a year ago, when Researches announced a link between Topamax and Cleft Lip & Cleft Palate birth defects. Topamax was then moved from a Pregnancy Category C, to a Pregnancy Category D. What was once believed to be safe for pregnant women is now unsafe.

Not too long after that, SSRI Drugs(Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors) more commonly known as anti-depressants, were found to increase a woman’s risk of giving birth to child with birth defects if taken during pregnancy. Effexor, an another anti-depressant categorized under SRNI, is also said to have a link between pregnancy usage and birth defects.

While it’s true, that pregnant women need to be more careful about what they put into their bodies, Doctors, Healthcare Providers, and Pharmaceutical Companies owe them the opportunity to make an informed decision.

New York Senator Sen. Charles Schumer is calling on the FDA to provide clearer warning labels for pregnant women and the potential dangers to their unborn babies.

Anti-nausea drug Zofran®  was prescribed to treat morning sickness, although the FDA never approved it for that use.  GlaxoSmithKline failed to warn women that Zofran pregnancy use could increase an unborn child’s risk for developing cleft palate or lip.

While the reasoning behind Senator Schumer’s suggestion is to decrease the amount of babies born addicted to painkillers, these new labels will clearly help all women and unborn children who may suffer because of inadequate warning labels.