sábado, 28 de febrero de 2015

Talk to Your Doctor | Features | CDC

Talk to Your Doctor | Features | CDC

CDC. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. CDC 24/7: Saving Lives. Protecting People.

Talk to Your Doctor

Pregnant woman talking to her healthcare provider about medication use.

In honor of National Birth Defects Prevention Month, make a PACT to get healthy, physically and mentally, before and during pregnancy to increase your chances of having a healthy baby. Talking with a healthcare provider about medication use is an important step.
While not all birth defects can be prevented, women can follow some basic health guidelines throughout their reproductive years to increase their chances of having a healthy baby. This is important because many birth defects happen very early during pregnancy, sometimes before a woman even knows that she is pregnant. For this year's National Birth Defects Prevention Month, we encourage all women and their loved ones to make aPACT for prevention.
Plan ahead
Avoid harmful substances
Choose a healthy lifestyle
Talk to your healthcare provider
This week, we focus on talking to your healthcare provider, specifically about medication use.
Pregnant woman with nurse
If you are pregnant or planning a pregnancy, the first thing you should do is talk with your healthcare provider.

Talk to your healthcare provider about medication use.

About 9 out of 10 women in the United States take a medication during pregnancy. That means about 5.4 million pregnancies are exposed to medications each year. If you are pregnant or planning a pregnancy, the first thing you should do is talk with your healthcare provider. Some pregnant women must take medications to treat health conditions, such as asthma, epilepsy (seizures), high blood pressure, or depression. In some cases, avoiding or stopping medication use during pregnancy may be more harmful than taking a medication. At the same time, taking certain medications in pregnancy, like isotretinoin (an acne medication known as Accutane), is known to cause serious birth defects or poor pregnancy outcomes.
While some medications are known to be harmful when taken during pregnancy, we don't know the safety or risk of most medications. In fact, fewer than 10% of marketed medications have enough information to determine their risk for birth defects. The effects of a particular medication during pregnancy depend on many factors, such as:
  • How much medication is taken (sometimes called the dose).
  • When during the pregnancy the medication is taken.
  • Other health conditions a woman might have.
  • Other medications a woman takes.
The important thing to remember is to talk to your healthcare provider. Be sure to tell them about all medications you're taking or planning to take. These include prescription and over-the-counter medications, and dietary or herbal supplements. A conversation with a healthcare provider can help ensure that you are taking only what is necessary.

CDC Activities: Medication Use during Pregnancy

The good news is that CDC and other researchers are working to gather more information on medications used during pregnancy. We are working hard to understand how specific medications might affect an unborn baby. CDC's Treating for Two: Safer Medication Use in Pregnancy initiative aims to improve the health of women and babies by working to identify the safest treatment options for the management of common conditions before and during pregnancy. For more information, visit Treating for Two.

CDC Activities: Birth Defects

CDC works to identify causes of birth defects, find opportunities to prevent them, and improve the health of those living with birth defects.
  • Tracking: Accurately tracking birth defects is important for prevention. CDC funds 14 states to track major birth defects using population-based methods. State systems use the data from population-based tracking to help direct birth defects prevention activities and refer children affected by birth defects to needed services.
  • Research: CDC funds the Centers for Birth Defects Research and Prevention, which collaborate on large studies such as the National Birth Defects Prevention Study (births 1997-2011) and the Birth Defects Study To Evaluate Pregnancy exposureS, also called BD-STEPS, (began in 2014). These studies work to identify what might raise or lower the risk of having a baby with a birth defect. Other CDC research focuses on health services use and costs associated with birth defects, which are important considerations in helping children with birth defects reach their full potential.
  • Prevention: CDC and its partners can use what they learn through research to prevent birth defects.
    • Folic acid: We learned long ago that getting folic acid before and during the early weeks of pregnancy greatly reduces the risk of serious birth defects of the brain and spine (e.g., spina bifida and anencephaly). A 1996 policy to add folic acid to many foods helps to prevent many of these birth defects.
    • Preconception care: CDC and its partners also work to educate women about the importance of preconception health through a campaign calledShow Your Love.
  • Improving the lives of individuals with birth defects: Babies who have birth defects often need special care and treatments to survive and thrive developmentally. Birth defects tracking systems provide one way to identify and refer children for services they need as early as possible. Early intervention (treatment for delays in physical, intellectual, communication, social-emotional, and adaptive development) is vital to improving outcomes for babies born with a birth defect.

More Information

  • Good Medicine Can Be Bad for Baby (English) [05:21:00 minutes]
  • Beating Birth Defects (English) [07:10:00 minutes]
  • Folic Acid: Helping to Ensure a Healthy Pregnancy (English or Spanish) [04:37:00 minutes]
  • Ten Tips to Prevent Infections during Pregnancy (English or Spanish) [04:07:00 minutes]
  • Put Down That Drink if You Are Pregnant (or Trying to Be)! (English or Spanish) [02:28:00 minutes]
  • If You're Pregnant, Don't Smoke (English or Spanish) [02:56:00 minutes]

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