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Pregnancy

Is it okay to take gabapentin while pregnant?

Gabapentin use during pregnancy is determined on a case-by-case basis.

Animal studies have shown that gabapentin intake during pregnancy increases the risk of embryo fetal toxicity, specifically on mice. For rats, adverse effects on offspring development were common among those who had gabapentin during pregnancy.

Talk to your doctor about taking gabapentin if you are pregnant or are planning on being pregnant. Your doctor may have alternative medication(s) to gabapentin, depending on your individual needs and health.

A 2013 study concluded a higher rate of preterm births and low birth weight among babies whose mothers used the drug during pregnancy, in comparison to babies whose mothers did not use it during pregnancy.

In the same study, 38 percent of the babies who were exposed to gabapentin before delivery were admitted to the neonatal intensive care unit or under special care after birth. The study concluded that gabapentin use during pregnancy does not seem to increase the risk for major malfunctions, but that more research is needed for confirmation.

An important reminder

Some clinicians may recommend pregnant women continue gabapentin prescriptions, if the benefits outweigh the risks. Talk with your doctor about the risks of taking gabapentin while pregnant before making any decisions.

Is gabapentin dangerous in pregnancy?

Because the risks of taking gabapentin while pregnant in humans are not fully understood, use of gabapentin during pregnancy is determined on a case-by-case basis to determine if the benefits outweigh the risks. Gabapentin is a pregnancy category C, which means risk cannot be ruled out.

Does gabapentin cause birth defects?

There is currently not enough data to determine the risk of major birth defects in humans. Gabapentin is a pregnancy category C, which means risk cannot be ruled out.

Lactation

Gabapentin can be transmitted through human milk. It’s currently unknown how breast milk containing gabapentin affects newborns or even the milk production process. Consult your physician about breastfeeding while taking gabapentin.

Does gabapentin affect female fertility?

There is not enough data to say whether or not gabapentin affects human fertility. In rat studies, though, there were no noted impairments of fertility.

Disclaimer: this article does not constitute or replace medical advice. If you have an emergency or a serious medical question, please contact a medical professional or call 911 immediately. To see our full medical disclaimer, visit our Terms of Use page.


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