Presented at the 16th annual meeting of The European Network of Teratogen Information Services (ENTIS), September 2, 2005, Harlem, The Netherlands and at the annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics (ASCPT), March 21–25, 2007, Anaheim California.
Pregnancy outcome of women exposed to azathioprine during pregnancy †
Article first published online: 10 SEP 2007
Copyright © 2007 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
Birth Defects Research Part A: Clinical and Molecular Teratology
Volume 79, Issue 10, pages 696–701, October 2007
How to Cite
Goldstein, L. H., Dolinsky, G., Greenberg, R., Schaefer, C., Cohen-Kerem, R., Diav-Citrin, Orna., Malm, H., Reuvers-Lodewijks, Minke. E., Rost van Tonningen-van Driel, M. M., Arnon, J., Ornoy, A., Clementi, M., Di Gianantonio, E., Koren, G., Braunstein, R. and Berkovitch, M. (2007), Pregnancy outcome of women exposed to azathioprine during pregnancy . Birth Defects Research Part A: Clinical and Molecular Teratology, 79: 696–701. doi: 10.1002/bdra.20399
- Issue published online: 8 OCT 2007
- Article first published online: 10 SEP 2007
- Manuscript Accepted: 28 JUL 2007
- Manuscript Revised: 14 JUN 2007
- Manuscript Received: 15 JAN 2007
- Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto- Tel-Aviv University Collaborative Program funded by the Canadian Friends of Tel Aviv University
- Azathioprine (AZP);
- major malformation;
- low birth weight;
- gestational age
BACKGROUND Azathioprine (AZP) interferes with nucleic acid synthesis and is teratogenic in animals. In view of the paucity of information on the use of AZP during pregnancy we investigated this subject in a prospective, controlled, multicenter study. Our objective was too determine whether exposure to AZP during pregnancy increases the risk for major malformations and to determine the effect on pregnancy outcome. METHODS Pregnant women on AZP who contacted one of seven teratogen information services were compared to a cohort of pregnant women who contacted two of the seven teratogen information services and took nonteratogenic treatments during their pregnancy. RESULTS Follow-up was completed on 189 women in the AZP group and compared to 230 women in the control group. The rate of major malformations did not differ between groups with six neonates in each; the AZP rate was 3.5% and the control group rate was 3.0% (p = .775; OR 1.17; CI: 0.37, 3.69). The mean birth weight and gestational age were lower in the AZP group (2,995 g vs. 3,252 g [p = .001, difference of mean: 257, 95% CI: 106.3, 408.1] and 37.8 weeks vs. 39.1 weeks [p = .001, difference of mean: 1.3, 95% CI: .5, 2.0], respectively). The AZP group had more cases of prematurity (21.4% vs. 5.2% [p < .001; OR 4.0; 95% CI: 2.0, 8.06]) and low birth weight (23% vs. 6.0% [p < .001; OR 3.81; 95% CI: 2.0, 7.2]). CONCLUSIONS These results suggest that AZP (50–100 mg/day) does not triple the rate of birth defects; however, it is associated with lower birth weight, gestational age, and prematurity. Larger studies are needed to confirm these observations. © 2007 Wiley-Liss, Inc.