Alvesco and Pregnancy
As a pregnancy Category C medication, Alvesco (ciclesonide inhaler) may be prescribed if the benefits to the mother outweigh the risks to the fetus. More research is needed to determine if it is absolutely safe for pregnant women. In studies of pregnant rabbits, the drug increased the risk of problems such as miscarriage; however, no problems occurred when it was given to pregnant rats.
Alvesco® (ciclesonide inhaler) is a prescription asthma medication. Although animal studies show that Alvesco might be dangerous during pregnancy, preliminary survey-type data suggest that these risks might not apply to humans.
What Is Pregnancy Category C?
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) uses a category system to classify the possible risks to a fetus when a specific medicine is taken during pregnancy. Pregnancy Category C is given to medicines that have not been studied in pregnant humans but do appear to cause harm to the fetus in animal studies.
In addition, medicines that have not been studied in any pregnant women or animals are automatically given a pregnancy Category C rating.
When given to pregnant rabbits, Alvesco increased the risk of miscarriage, low birth weight, cleft palate, and bone or skin problems. These problems occurred even at relatively low doses. However, when this medication was given to pregnant rats, no problems occurred, even at very high doses.
It is important to note that animals do not always respond to medicines the same way that humans do. Therefore, a pregnancy Category C drug such as Alvesco may be given to a pregnant woman if the healthcare provider believes that the benefits to the woman outweigh any possible risks to the unborn child.
If you are pregnant or are thinking about becoming pregnant, let your healthcare provider know. He or she will consider the benefits and risks of taking Alvesco during pregnancy before making a recommendation in your particular situation.