Determinants of Women's Decision Making on Whether to Treat Nausea and Vomiting of Pregnancy Pharmacologically

Authors

  • Anne Baggley BSc,

    Search for more papers by this author
    • Anne Baggley, BSc, is a second-year medical student at The University of Toronto, Ontario.

  • Yvette Navioz,

    Search for more papers by this author
    • Yvette Navioz is a counselor and researcher at the Motherisk NVP Helpline, The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto.

  • Caroline Maltepe BA,

    Search for more papers by this author
    • Caroline Maltepe, BA, is a counselor and researcher at The Motherisk NVP Helpline, The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Canada.

  • Gideon Koren MD,

    Search for more papers by this author
    • Gideon Koren, MD, FRCP, is the Director of The Motherisk Program, The Hospital for Sick Children and a Career Scientist at The Ministry of Health of Ontario.

  • Adrienne Einarson RN

    Corresponding authorSearch for more papers by this author
    • Adrienne Einarson, RN, is the Assistant Director, The Motherisk Program and project director in The Research Institute, The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Canada.


The Motherisk Program, Division of Clinical Pharmacology, The Hospital for Sick Children, 555 University Avenue, Toronto, Ontario M5G 1X8, Canada. E-mail: einarson@sickkids.on.ca

Abstract

Nausea and vomiting of pregnancy (NVP) affects up to 80% of all women to some degree during their pregnancies. Diclectin (doxy lamine and pyridoxine [vitamin B6]) has been on the Canadian market for many years and is indicated as the drug of choice for the treatment of NVP. However, some women choose not to treat NVP with pharmacologic measures, perhaps due to a persistent fear of teratogenic risk. The objective of this study was to determine the factors that influence a woman's decision not to treat NVP with pharmacologic measures. Fifty-nine women recruited from the Motherisk Nausea and Vomiting Helpline completed a questionnaire. All were informed that Diclectin was considered safe for use during pregnancy. At a follow-up telephone call, 34% were not using any pharmacologic treatment, and of those who were taking the drug, 26% were using less than the recommended dose. Reasons cited for not using the medication were insufficient safety data, preference for non-pharmacologic methods, and being made to feel uncomfortable by the physician. Of the women who did use Diclectin, the most convincing reassuring information that it was safe to use came from friends and family. Many other factors play a large role in a women's decision making.

Ancillary