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Startling study links miscarriages to a common yeast infection med

Meagan Morris is an entertainment and lifestyle journalist living in New York City. In addition to SheKnows, Morris contributes to many publications including The New York Times, Yahoo! News, PopEater, NBC New York and Spinner. Follow he...

FDA warns pregnant women to steer clear of the yeast infection med fluconazole

Pay close attention if you're newly pregnant — or about to get pregnant — and suffer from yeast infections.

Earlier this week, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued a warning advising doctors not to prescribe the common yeast infection medication fluconazole to pregnant women because of miscarriage risk.

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According to a Danish study published in January in JAMA, women who took the oral med in the first 22 weeks of pregnancy had a much higher chance of miscarriage than women who didn't. The study — conducted by researchers at the State Serum Institute in Copenhagen, examined medical histories of 1.4 million pregnancies over 17 years and found that of the 3,300 women who took fluconazole — known commercially as Diflucan — 150 suffered miscarriages

This isn't the first time the FDA has advised against taking the medicine, but the previous warning was due to a link between high daily doses (between 400 and 800 milligrams) and a rare set of birth defects. But what's scary is that the amount linked to miscarriages in the Danish study showed that it happened in women who took a commonly prescribed daily dose (150 milligrams).

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"Until F.D.A.’s review is complete and more is understood about this study and other available data, we advise cautious prescribing of oral fluconazole in pregnancy,” Lyndsay Meyer, a spokeswoman for the FDA, told The New York Times.

So, do pregnant women just have to deal with the constant itching and pain that comes with yeast infections? Thankfully, no: Topical azole products are recommended for pregnant women by the Centers for Disease Control.

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