Zofran May Not be the Miracle Worker You Think It Is
Some news that might make you nauseous
I knew I was pregnant when I started puking in the street during a morning run. My doctor told me it would get better, but as the weeks progressed, I found myself puking in bags in the car, at work, and even rushing from the dinner table barely making it to the sink. One morning, I spent more than an hour huddled over the toilet. My husband found me passed out on the bathroom floor. It was like college except a lot less fun.When I hauled myself to the doctor (stopping on the way to puke), she prescribed Zofran. I was well into the second trimester by that time and still miserable. Zofran was magic. I would have built an altar to it and made it my personal deity if I hadn’t been too pregnant to kneel.
Recently, a study has come out that knocks Zofran from its place of honor in the pregnancy world. An article in Ob.Gyn. News notes that Ondansetron (Zofran) is associated with potential risks including cardiac arrhythmia and serotonin syndrome. And there is some evidence in a small study linking Zofran to cleft palate. The article also notes that many doctors aren’t following the correct recommendations for the drug. The FDA has concluded that the research at least warrants further investigation into the possible side-effects of the drug.
While the risks are small and the studies aren’t conclusive, it is worth noting that the FDA has approved Diclegis (doxylamine succinate and pyridoxine hydrochloride) for pregnant women. Diclegis is a pregnancy class A drug which means it’s rated as safer for pregnant women.
Normally, I look askance at news reports of incomplete studies whose sole purpose just seems to be striking fear into the hearts of pregnant women who don’t really have many choices. But the fact that there is a safer drug that is just as effective means that if I ever find myself pregnant and puking in my neighbor’s yard again, I’ll steer clear of Zofran.
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