Ibuprofen May Be Raising Miscarriage Risk

Could your over-the-counter pain killer be raising your chance of miscarriage?  A new study out of Canada contends that taking anti-inflammatory drugs prior to pregnancy or in the first trimester could as much as double your risk.


Common anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen and naproxen may increase the chance of miscarriage if they are taken early in pregnancy, a new study suggests.

Risk of miscarriage more than doubled in women who took non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, or NSAIDs, during the first 20 weeks of gestation, according to researchers who scrutinized health records from nearly 50,000 Canadian women.

The study appears in the latest issue of the Canadian Medical Association Journal.

“I would strongly suggest that women take no non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs during the first trimester,” said study co-author Anick Berard, a professor of epidemiology at the University of Montreal and director of the research unit on medications and pregnancy at Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Ste. Justine.”If a woman is taking an NSAID for a chronic condition she really has to talk to her health care provider to see if it’s feasible to stop at least during the first trimester.”

The study found that the rate of miscarriage for women using NSAIDs was 35 percent, compared to 15 percent among women who didn’t take the medicines.  However, they are unsure if any other factors may have played into the equation, such as whatever health issue the women were taking the drugs for in the first place.

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  • divine-oubliette


    Objective To evaluate whether prenatal use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) is associated with increased risk of miscarriage.

    Design Population based cohort study. Prenatal use of NSAIDs, aspirin, and paracetamol (acetaminophen) ascertained by in-person interview.

    Setting Kaiser Permanente Medical Care Program, a healthcare delivery system, in the San Francisco area of the United States.

    Participants 1055 pregnant women recruited and interviewed immediately after their positive pregnancy test. Median gestational age at entry to the study was 40 days.

    Main outcome measures Pregnancy outcomes up to 20 weeks of gestation.

    Results 53 women (5%) reported prenatal NSAID use around conception or during pregnancy. After adjustment for potential confounders, prenatal NSAID use was associated with an 80% increased risk of miscarriage (adjusted hazard ratio 1.8 (95% confidence interval 1.0 to 3.2)). The association was stronger if the initial NSAID use was around the time of conception or if NSAID use lasted more than a week. Prenatal aspirin use was similarly associated with an increased risk of miscarriage. However, prenatal use of paracetamol, pharmacologically different from NSAIDs and aspirin, was not associated with increased risk of miscarriage regardless of timing and duration of use.

    Conclusion Prenatal use of NSAIDs and aspirin increased the risk of miscarriage. These findings need confirmation in studies designed specifically to examine the apparent association.



    Aspirin or Ibuprofen increase the risk of miscarriage 60 – 80%. Acetaminophen hasn’t been proven to incrse the risk of miscarriage – so ladies if you need something for your headache while pregnant reach for the Acetaminophen not Ibuprophen or Aspirin.