FDA warns against epilepsy drug valproate for pregnant women

The FDA, in a warning issued Thursday, said that women who took valproate products for epilepsy and psychiatric problems during pregnancy increased the risk that their babies would have developmental delays, compared with women who took other anti-seizure drugs. Medical providers should "weigh the benefits and risks of valproate when prescribing this drug to women of childbearing age, particularly when treating a condition not usually associated with permanent injury or death," the FDA said. "Alternative medications that have a lower risk of adverse birth outcomes should be considered."

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