Fertility of Unborn Children May be Impacted by Mother's Painkiller Use

Researchers warn taking ibuprofen while pregnant could impact fertility of unborn daughters

According to a new study, recently published in Human Reproduction, mother's who take ibuprofen during the first trimester of their pregnancy "risk harming the future of their unborn daughters," IFLScience.com reported The study examined 185 fetuses from pregnancy terminations that were 7-12 weeks old by culturing ovarian tissue in a lab, and testing the blood from the umbilical cords of the fetuses to determine whether or not exposure to ibuprofen caused harm. According to their findings, ibuprofen is able to cross the placental barrier.  Their research showed that fetal tissue that was exposed to ibuprofen for seven days had nearly half the number of ovarian germ cells. 

"We found there were fewer cells growing and dividing, more cells dying and a dramatic loss of germ cells numbers, regardless of the gestational age of the fetus," Dr. Severine Mazaud-Guittot said. There were significant effects after seven days of exposure to ibuprofen, and we saw cell death as early as after two days of treatment. Five days after withdrawing ibuprofen, these harmful effects of ibuprofen were not fully reversed." While additional studies will need to be completed in order to be considered conclusive, researchers are still recommending women avoid taking ibuprofen, particularly during the first three months of pregnancy.