Medications in Pregnancy

pregnant person taking a vitamin

Medication should not be used in pregnancy unless necessary. Those with underlying conditions may require continued medication use in pregnancy. Medications listed below have been shown to not cause birth defects. Most other medications fall into an “unknown category” meaning there have been no studies documenting their safety in pregnancy. Please speak with your provider about all your medications, including over the counter, herbs and supplements.

Medical Conditions Requiring Medication Use in Pregnancy

If you are unsure about continuing a medication in pregnancy, please contact our office to review your medial history. This can be done through the FollowMyHealth patient portal, by phone, or office visit. Do not discontinue any medication without consulting with your doctor.


Use your inhalers routinely or as needed. Asthma symptoms can worsen in pregnancy. Ventolin, Asthmacort, Proventil, Advair, Nasonex or Flonase help keep the breathing passages open. Claritin, Benadryl, and Zyrtec are antihistamines that are safe during pregnancy. Let your doctor know if your asthma is not responding to your routine inhalers. Occasionally oral steroids may be necessary.


Your mental well-being is very important for a healthy pregnancy. If you are on antidepressants you may continue them under the advice of your doctor. Safe mediations include Prozac, Zoloft, and Wellbutrin. Please monitor your mood and emotional symptoms closely for worsening of depression or postpartum depression.


If you have Type I or Type II diabetes before pregnancy, continue managing your blood sugars closely. It is important to be closely monitored, alter your diet as needed, and check your blood sugars frequently. Your provider will discuss using oral medication or insulin as needed to keep your blood sugar in the appropriate range.

High Blood Pressure

Continue your blood pressure medication. Blood pressure medications commonly used during pregnancy include Nifedipine, Labetolol, and Methyldopa. You may require a higher dose or change to different medication in pregnancy. Preeclampsia is more common in patients with pre-existing high blood pressure. Please discuss medications with your provider or care team. With the mobile Babyscripts app you can monitor your blood pressure, for more information please see Babyscripts blood pressure FAQs.

Thyroid Disease

Continue any regular thyroid medication (Synthroid, Thyroxine). Blood tests for thyroid may be monitored by your obstetrician, primary care doctor, or your endocrinologist during pregnancy. The thyroid medication dose may need to be adjusted. Please let your provider or care team know if you are on any overactive thyroid medication.

For a full-list of safe over the counter medications during pregnancy, please refer to page 17 of the GW Obstetrics Guide.