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Scientists on a large new study have discovered that when a woman takes acetaminophen during pregnancy, her future child may be at an increased risk of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and similar behavioral problems. This is important information because doctors frequently prescribe acetaminophen as a safe drug for women to take while pregnant. The study, published Monday in the medical journal JAMA Pediatrics, looked at data from more than 64,000 children enrolled in the Danish National Birth Cohort study between 1996 and 2002, which asked mothers to report on their children’s behavior. Researchers also used databases to determine how many specific prescriptions for ADHD drugs were written for the kids and how many children had received a diagnosis of a severe form of ADHD called hyperkinetic disorder (HKD). While researchers note that prenatal exposure to acetaminophen DID NOT cause ADHD, there was a small increase of the disorder seen in the children born to women who took acetaminophen during pregnancy. That said,  “it’s reasonable to say that there’s no reason to use these drugs during pregnancy unless there is a clear medical indication,” Dr. Jorn Olsen, one of the study’s authors, told Reuters Health. Most research thus far has deemed medications like occasional acetaminophen or ibuprofen as mostly safe during pregnancy, but keep in mind that any drug can pose a possible risk if you’re pregnant. If you have a headache, body ache or fever always speak with your midwife or doctor before swallowing pills. You can also take at look at some natural, drug-free pregnancy headache remedies.

+ Acetaminophen Use During Pregnancy, Behavioral Problems, and Hyperkinetic Disorders

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