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7% of future mothers take dangerous medicines

Credit: Belga

Eight out of ten women consume medicines prescribed and reimbursed during their pregnancy. In 7% of cases, the medicines are potentially dangerous to the foetus or likely to cause development abnormalities. Le Soir is reporting the findings on Tuesday, based on studies by the groups Mutualités Libres and Mutualité Socialiste.

Alain Chaspierre, a Pharmacist and President of the Association of Belgian Pharmacists (the “APB”) notes, “For pharmacists, it is both difficult and a delicate issue, as to whether the woman is trying for a baby or is pregnant.” He wishes to “encourage women to mention it spontaneously to their pharmacist and their doctor.”

He feels that the discussion that will enable the avoidance of the prescription of medicines, which are potentially harmful for the foetus.

Nevertheless, some harmful drugs are available without prescription, indeed on the Internet. Such is the case with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories, such as Diclofenac or Ibuprofen, which are to be absolutely avoided. To date, scientific evidence suggests that only paracetamol can treat pain  without harming the foetus.

Le Soir goes on to state that a further solution would be to affix a pictogram of a pregnant woman on boxes of dangerous medicines, as happens in France. 

The Brussels Times