Pregnant women in their first trimester are losing their apprehensions over the use of prescription medicine, discovered researchers at Harvard and Boston.
The research team at the Harvard school of Public Health and Boston University's Slone Epidemiology Center looked at data collected by the Slone Epidemiology Center's Birth Defects Study (1976-2008) and the CDC's National Birth Defects Prevention Study (1997-2003), involving 30,000 women and discovered that over the past thirty years, the use of prescription and over the counter medication had increased by 60 per cent.
Researchers also reported that 70-80 percent of women in their first trimester of pregnancy took at least one medication including antidepressants. Surprisingly, the use of medication increased with a woman's age and education level. Using medication was more widespread among white women compared to those of other ethnicities.
Allen A. Mitchell, MD, lead author of the study reports that more research is necessary on the risks and safety of these medications and it is also important to know how the use of medications changes over time.