Malaria pills and pregnancy don't always mix. If you're a traveler, there are some things you should know... It might make a difference when you are planning where to go on your vacation.
Talk to your doctor, read all the precautions, and decide how important that trip is.
You don't want to get the disease anytime, but especially not when you're pregnant. Malaria infection when women are pregnant can be more severe. Getting malaria can increase problems such as premature births or worst of all, sometimes spontaneous abortion or stillbirth.
So if you're pregnant or if you're likely to become pregnant on your trip, take the pills and use all measures you can to avoid mosquito bites... like mosquito netting....
Again ... Try to find a malaria free destination or postpone your trip. If you must travel to an area where malaria is present, take the pills.... but... remember, some malaria pills and pregnancy don't mix.
Your Choices Are Limited For Malaria Pills and Pregnancy
You have fewer choices for malaria pills and pregnancy. What that means is that there are fewer malaria pills you can take when you're pregnant. Of the major types of anti-malarial pills currently in use, only half are recommended for pregnant women.
These are the ones that are recommended:
Atovaquone/proguanil (Malarone™) is NOT currently recommended for women during pregnancy. This is one of the more commonly prescribed malaria pills as of this date, but there have not been enough studies to prove that it is safe to use when you are pregnant, so you don't want to take the risk.
Doxycycline is definitely NOT recommended because it is related to the antibiotic tetracycline. We know Tetracycline causes discoloration and malformed teeth in babies, and it may inhibit bone growth too.
Primaquine has never been prescribed for us. I don't think it's too commonly prescribed, but it should NOT be used during pregnancy because it can be passed through the placenta to the infant. There is a condition called G6PD Deficiency. It is an inherited condition where the person or fetus lacks a certain enzyme... Most people with G6PD Deficiency don't have any symptoms, but if your baby is exposed to Primaquine (and some other drugs) it can cause hemolytic anemia in the baby before birth... and that could even be fatal.
If You Must Travel - Avoid The Bites
If you travel to a malaria area when you are pregnant, follow all the safety measure for mosquito avoidance.... avoid the bites!
Go Later and Be Safe
We always want you to remember that we are not medical professionals. We're just trying to interpret what they say for you.... to make it easier to understand your risks.
The bottom line is... from what we can tell... if you are a pregnant traveler who can choose when and where to travel... go someplace without malaria risks or go later and be safe. That way you won't have to worry about malaria pills and pregnancy.
Happy travels... even if you don't travel the world... just remember that life is a journey... embrace and enjoy it! Judy and Mark
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