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Thursday, 21 May 2015

YOUR HEALTH 'ND YOU!: Taking Paracetamol While Pregnant Could Harm Baby Boys

Pregnant women have been warned that taking paracetamol could harm their unborn baby.

The popular painkiller is believed to have lifelong effects on baby boys, raising their risk of everything from infertility to cancer.

Edinburgh University researchers said Britons have become 'blasé' about paracetamol’s potential dangers – and urged pregnant women to think twice before taking the drug.

They said that if the tablets are taken, they should be used in the lowest possible dose, for the shortest possible time.

Pregnant women have been warned that prolonged use of paracetamol could harm their unborn baby boy.

The Royal College of Midwives said mothers-to-be should seek medical advice before taking paracetamol at all.

And the medicines’ watchdog is to carefully evaluate the research.

Paracetamol is the most widely-used painkiller in the world. And as the only painkiller deemed safe in pregnancy, it is taken by most mothers-to-be.

However several studies have suggested it interferes with the development of the male reproductive system while still in the womb.

This is important because it is thought that if this programming goes wrong, it has lifelong effects, putting the child at higher risk of a range of problems from genital birth defects to infertility and testicular cancer.

Testosterone, which is made in the testicles, is thought to be key to the whole process, so the researchers carried out an experiment designed to show if exposure to paracetamol in the womb cuts levels of the hormone.

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