Is Albuterol safe for pregnant or breast feeding women?

Diana Meeks
Diana Meeks on behalf of Sigma Nursing
Family Practitioner

Albuterol is a category "C" medication which means some animal studies have indicated a possible problem for the fetus, so the benefits must outweigh the risks. When discussing pregnancy, one of the most important things for the baby is Oxygen. If there is a problem with insufficient oxygen, the baby may suffer damage. Therefore the benefits to an asthmatic woman of breathing well with the help of Albuterol when necessary can be a help to the baby. In many years of caring for pregnant women, my experience has been of seeing good results with the use of Albuterol to maintain control of asthma symptoms. The babies have all been healthy with no damage from their mothers' use of a rescue inhaler.

There haven't been enough studies to determine if albuterol, a bronchodilator used to relieve asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) symptoms, is safe for pregnant or breastfeeding women. There are no data on whether the drug causes birth defects in newborns.

Uncontrolled asthma during pregnancy is known to adversely affect the fetus. More research is needed to evaluate whether the benefits of controlling asthma during pregnancy outweigh any potential risks associated with albuterol. It is also not known whether albuterol passes into breast milk, but many medications do.

If you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant or are breastfeeding, talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits associated with albuterol use.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.