A study published on Tuesday the 6th of September 2011 has found that women who use common pain killers like ibuprofen and naproxen early in pregnancy may have a miscarriage.
Researchers found that of nearly 52,000 women who had been pregnant in Canada, those who had used a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) after conceiving were more than twice as likely to suffer a miscarriage.
The researchers also looked at NSAID’s other than aspirin – which includes such common drugs as ibuprofen, naproxen and the arthritis drug Celebrex.
They found that of 4,705 women who had a miscarriage, 7.5% had filled a prescription for a NSAID at some point during pregnancy. That compared with less than 3% of the 47,000 who had not suffered a miscarriage.
The findings suggest that both prescription and over the counter NSAID’s may be linked to miscarriage. The study does not however prove that NSAID’s themselves caused some women’s miscarriages. Levels of hormone like substances called prostaglandins decline in the uterus during early pregnancy and NSAID’s are known to affect prostaglandin production. The theory is that NSAID’s might affect miscarriage risk by interfering with the normal prostaglandin changes that occur early in pregnancy.
In general, pregnant women have been advised to use any medication during pregnancy if possible.