The FDA considers Zithromax a pregnancy Category B medicine, which means that while the drug has not been studied in pregnant humans, it showed no harm to the fetus in previous animal studies. A healthcare provider may prescribe this drug to a pregnant woman if he or she decides that its benefits outweigh the possible risks.
Can Pregnant Women Take Zithromax?
Zithromax® (azithromycin) is considered a pregnancy Category B medicine by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which means that it has not been studied in pregnant women. However, when studied in pregnant animals, Zithromax showed no negative effects on unborn babies.
What Is Pregnancy Category B?
The FDA uses a category system to classify the possible risks to a fetus when a specific medicine is taken during pregnancy. Pregnancy Category B is given to medicines that have not been studied in pregnant humans but do not appear to cause harm to the fetus in animal studies.
However, it is important to note that animals do not always respond to medicines the same way that humans do. Therefore, a pregnancy Category B medicine may be given to a pregnant woman if her healthcare provider believes that its benefits to her outweigh any possible risks to her unborn child.
If you are pregnant and have been prescribed Zithromax, let your healthcare provider know. He or she will consider both the benefits and risks of taking this drug during pregnancy before making a recommendation in your particular situation.
Written by/reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last reviewed by: KristiMonson, PharmD;
List of references (click here):
Zithromax [package insert]. New York, NY: Pfizer Inc.;2012 May.
Briggs GG, Freeman RK, Yaffe SJ. Drugs in Pregnancy and Lactation. 8th ed. Philadelphia (PA): Lippincott Williams & Wilkins;2008.
National Library of Medicine (US). Drugs and Lactation Database (LactMED). NLM Web site. Available at: http://toxnet.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/sis/htmlgen?LACT. Accessed March 12, 2010.
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