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Strong pain killers likely to cause miscarriage

An English expert says that certain over-the-counter pain killers should carry warnings that they can increase the risk of miscarriage.

The comments follow a study by Danish reseacher Gunnar Lauge Nielsen and colleagues published in this week's British Medical Journal which studied the effect on women of taking strong non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like indomethacin (ibuprofen).

Researchers used prescription //records to identify a study group of pregnant women who had taken NSAIDs and followed them through to see what happened to their pregnancy. And they compared this group to one which had taken no drugs.

The study found that while taking such drugs did not cause more birth defects, low birth weight or preterm births, it did cause a higher rate of miscarriage. Ironically, low doses of another NSAID, aspirin, is used in preventing miscarriage in a small group of women who have an immune disease which blocks implantation.With this low dose, very little gets into the general circulation. Most of it goes into the liver," said Dr. Illingworth, he suggested a more detailed study on this.


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