Should I avoid taking any medicine while I am pregnant?

Whether or not you should continue taking medicine during pregnancy is a serious question. But, if you stop taking medicine that you need, this could harm both you and your baby. An example of this is if you have an infection called toxoplasmosis, which you can get from handling cat feces or eating infected meat. It can cause problems with the brain, eyes, heart, and other organs of a growing fetus. This infection requires treatment with antibiotics.

For pregnant women living with HIV, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends the drug zidovudine (AZT). Studies have found that HIV positive women who take AZT during pregnancy decrease by two-thirds the risk of passing HIV to their babies. If a diabetic woman does not take her medicine during pregnancy, the mother’s health may be threatened and problems with the fetus may result. If asthma and/or high blood pressure are not controlled during pregnancy, problems with the fetus may result. Talk with your health care provider about whether the benefits of taking a medication outweigh the risk for you and your baby.