Malformations following methimazole exposure in utero: An open issue




In hyperthyroidism-complicated pregnancies, medical therapy is necessary to reach an euthyroid condition, and propylthiouracil (PTU) or methimazole (MMI) are used. These drugs are equally effective, but may cause fetal and neonatal hypothyroidism because they freely cross the placenta. Although PTU has not been significantly associated with embryo-fetal anomalies, it has been suggested that MMI might be responsible for a specific embryopathy.


Two cases of major congenital anomalies after MMI exposure during pregnancy are reported.


PTU should be the drug of choice, and the use of MMI should be restricted to cases with allergic reactions, intolerance, or poor response to PTU. Birth Defects Research (Part A), 2003. © 2003 Wiley-Liss, Inc.