Study Finds Diabetes Drug Glyburide Increases Risk of Birth Injury among Pregnant Mothers

A new study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association’s (JAMA) Pediatrics edition has found a strong link between the diabetes drug glyburide and several severe birth complications including respiratory distress, hypoglycemia, and large size for gestational age. Glyburide is a widely used drug prescribed to pregnant women to treat gestational diabetes mellitus, also known as diabetes developed during pregnancy or GDM.

Gestational Diabetes is a somewhat common condition that occurs in between 200,000 and 3 million women every year in the U.S. The JAMA study examined a large and diverse group of expecting mothers who had developed diabetes, or any degree of glucose intolerance, after becoming pregnant. After examining the results of the study, it was determined that women treated for Gestational Diabetes with the drug glyburide were far more likely to experience birth complications than mothers that were treated with normal insulin.

Mothers treated with glyburide were found to be at a higher risk to give birth to children that would require neonatal intensive care admission than those that received treatment with insulin. Children of mothers that were treated with glyburide were also found to be more likely to develop hypoglycemia, respiratory distress, birth injury, and were more likely to be large for their gestational age.

The study found that women treated for GDM with glyburide rather than insulin were:

  • 2.97% more likely to require neonatal intensive care unit admission
  • 1.41% more likely to give birth to a child that is large for gestational age
  • 1.11% more likely to give birth to a child with respiratory distress

Glyburide is currently a widely prescribed GDM medication for pregnant women all over the country. The results of this study have now called into question the safety and efficacy of the drug, and the JAMA concluded that much more significant testing must be done before the drug can be declared safe for use in expecting mothers.

Women who are pregnant must be meticulously careful about everything that they eat and drink, as well as what medications they take. Small changes in diet or prescription medication can have a lasting and dramatic impact on the health of a fetus, which is why it is so vitally important for drug manufacturers to properly test all medication before declaring a drug safe for use in pregnant women.

When mothers experience tragic birth injuries as a result of a defective or unsafe medication, drug manufacturers must be held accountable. At The Yost Legal Group, Baltimore, Maryland Defective Drug law firm, we aggressively litigate a wide array of defective drug cases, and have both the medical and legal knowledge required to pursue major insurance and pharmaceutical companies.

If you experienced any problems during birth, if your child was born with a birth defect, or if the birth resulted in trauma to the baby, call The Yost Legal Group at 1-800-YOST-LAW (967-8529). When you call, you will speak with an experienced Baltimore Birth Injury attorney who will review your situation for free.

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