Painkiller warning for pregnant women

Friday, 2nd February 2001
The Scotsman

DOCTORS yesterday advised pregnant women to avoid taking common painkillers such as ibuprofen because of fears they could be linked to miscarriage.

According to a study in the British Medical Journal, non-steroidal anti-inflam-matory drugs - commonly used to treat backache during pregnancy - are associated with an increased risk of losing a baby.

The Danish researchers, who examined the cases of 35,000 women, said more work needed to be done to establish whether taking the drugs actually caused miscarriage. However, the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists urged women to be careful and use alternative painkillers.

A college spokeswoman said: "It would be better if for the moment that women who knew they were pregnant avoided these drugs, particularly as there are effective alternatives such as paracetemol."