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Are arthritic painkillers safe during pregnancy?

Dear Doctor;I am 32 and diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis two months back. I started taking medicines, including pain killers like Etoshine, calcium and paracetamol. Now I am pregnant. Is it safe to continue the drugs? What are the side effects? Jane Kaitesi.

Dear Doctor;

I am 32 and diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis two months back. I started taking medicines, including pain killers like Etoshine, calcium and paracetamol. Now I am pregnant. Is it safe to continue the drugs? What are the side effects? Jane Kaitesi.

Dear Jane,

rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic condition for which no root cure has been discovered so far. Etoshine is a pain killer, which, like other similar medicines, carries risk of causing peptic ulcer and kidney toxicity. It is best to avoid all drugs during pregnancy, particularly in the first three months, as the body of baby is formed during that time. Risks include intrauterine growth retardation, fetal hemorrhage and organ abnormalities. However, from fourth month onwards, you can resume using the iron and calcium preparation. It is best to consider non-drug treatment like physiotherapy, local analgesic ointments for arthritis. Use painkiller only if the pain is excruciating.

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