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Eur J Obstet Gynecol Reprod Biol. 1992 Feb 28;43(3):201-7.

Use of amiodarone during pregnancy.

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Netherlands Institute for Drugs and Doping Research, State University of Utrecht.


Five cases are studied in which amiodarone (AM) was given during pregnancy, in two of them also during the breast feeding period, to estimate the risks for adverse effects. We measured the concentrations of AM and its major metabolite desethylamiodarone (DEA) in maternal plasma, cord plasma, infant plasma, placental tissue and breast milk and the thyroid hormones were measured in maternal and neonatal serum. Also, the neonates were examined for AM-associated adverse effects over a period varying from 8 months up to 5 years. We observed a limited maternal-fetal transfer of AM and DEA, while the concentration of DEA in placental tissue is relatively high. Considerable amounts of AM and DEA were present in breast milk. One infant appeared to be hypothyroid, detected by the neonatal thyroid screening. He was treated with triiodothyronine for weeks, until it was clear that the thyroid dysfunction was resolved. The other infants had normal screening results. No effect of the AM medication was observed on growth, liver function or cornea and skin.


although pregnancy and lactation are no absolute contraindications for use of AM, special precautions are necessary. It is unavoidable that in some cases the pregnant mother, and especially her infant, becomes hypothyroid. AM has to be administered in the lowest possible dose, and the maternal and neonatal thyroid function must be controlled as long as the exposure to AM lasts.

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