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Teratology. 1988 Aug;38(2):135-44.

Medroxyprogesterone acetate therapy in early pregnancy has no apparent fetal effects.

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  • 1PIVET Medical Centre, Perth, Western Australia.


Medroxyprogesterone acetate (MPA; Provera) was given orally to 449 women from the 5th to 7th week of pregnancy until at least the 18th week. Data are recorded from two treatment groups (recurrent abortion and threatened abortion) and are compared to a matched series. A total of 1,016 pregnancies are included in the study, and all patients were recruited from a subfertile population conceiving from a range of infertility treatments. Early pregnancy wastage was high throughout the groups and was significantly elevated (43%; P less than .001) in those women who had vaginal bleeding in early pregnancy. The study focuses on the question of potential teratogenicity of progestagens administered in the first trimester. There were 15/366 (4.1%) infants with congenital abnormalities in the MPA-treated group and 15/428 in the untreated group (3.5%). The difference was not significant, and MPA is considered to have no embryopathic risk, nor is it likely to retain an abnormal fetus that might otherwise abort. It appears that MPA is a safe drug to use in pregnancy although the question of efficacy has not been addressed in this report. Considering other recent negative epidemiologic studies with regard to teratogenicity, we add to the conclusion that MPA cannot be demonstrated to have a measurable teratogenic risk and certainly does not present a risk for congenital heart disease and limb reduction defects.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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