Trust me, It’s Safe! (Pregnancy and H1N1 influenza)

Pregnancy is now considered a risk factor for H1N1 influenza (formerly Swine flu), and consequently the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has begun to advocate that pregnant women who develop symptoms of the flu take Tamiflu or Relenza. The intent is to avoid complications such as premature labor, pneumonia and dehydration.

The only problem is that these medications have not been tested on and are not approved for women who are pregnant, so whether they will have adverse effects on the babies is unknown. The New York Times noted that:

“Tamiflu is not normally recommended for use by pregnant women because the effects on the unborn child are unknown, according to its maker, Roche.

“Dr. Jamieson, an obstetrician, said most medicines had insufficient safety data for pregnancy ‘because you don’t do clinical trials in pregnant women.’ But she added, ‘Tamiflu and Relenza are fairly safe in pregnancy.’”

Huh? Not recommended, insufficient safety data, but it’s “fairly” safe? They believe that the benefit outweighs the harm, but they don’t even know what the harm is! Ya gotta love modern medicine. Trust me, I’m a doctor….

To date, one pregnant woman in the US has died from H1N1. She was one out of three who died and one of over 3000 who have been diagnosed with this flu. Pregnant women who have the misfortune to get this illness will now be faced with a hard decision, with only half the information they need to do so. I hope it isn’t harmful to unborn babies; but if it is, you can be sure that we’ll see a lawsuit down the road.

Guest post by Cheryl K. Smith
Midwifery Today Managing Editor

 

Pregnant Women and Novel Influenza A (H1N1) Considerations for Clinicians - The CDC report

 

 

 

Comments

# sji said:

When it comes to variations of influenza A, elderberry is perhaps the safest and most effective way to combat these sorts of viruses. There are a number of other options available to the public - studies lifted right off Medline. Feel free to take a look at the url posted above.

Sunday, May 31, 2009 11:44 AM