Study finds no link between acetaminophen in pregnancy and autism/ADHD

  • 2 Min To Read
  • a month ago

A recent study published in JAMA found that using acetaminophen during pregnancy was not associated with an increased risk of autism, ADHD, or intellectual disability in children. This goes against prior findings that had advised against the use of acetaminophen during pregnancy due to concerns about potential negative effects on the developing fetus.

The study, conducted by researchers at the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, Sweden, aimed to address the limitations of previous studies that had examined the relationship between acetaminophen use during pregnancy and neurodevelopmental disorders. The researchers analyzed data from Swedish sources, including prenatal care records and a register of drug prescriptions, to assess the potential risks associated with acetaminophen use.

Co-senior author of the study, Renee M. Gardner, explained that the research was prompted by concerns raised by other researchers about the potential negative impacts of acetaminophen on the developing fetus. However, the study found that there was no significant association between acetaminophen use during pregnancy and the risk of autism, ADHD, or intellectual disability in children.

Experts, including Brian Lee from Drexel University, emphasized the importance of controlling for genetic and environmental factors when studying neurodevelopmental disorders. The study utilized sibling control analysis to compare children exposed to acetaminophen during pregnancy with those who were not exposed, and found no difference in risk between the two groups.

While some past studies have suggested a link between acetaminophen use during pregnancy and neurodevelopmental disorders, this new study provides evidence to the contrary. Experts now believe that acetaminophen is safe to use for pain and fever relief during pregnancy, and recommend it as the best option compared to aspirin and ibuprofen, which have potential risks for fetal development.

In conclusion, the study's findings suggest that acetaminophen is a safe option for pregnant women in need of pain and fever relief, and that there are numerous genetic and environmental factors that can influence a child's risk of neurodevelopmental disorders. More research is needed to fully understand the complexities of these factors and their impact on child development.


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