Is Diflucan Safe to Take While Pregnant?

When women become pregnant, everything they ingest and come into contact with can affect their growing fetuses. This is especially true for over-the-counter drugs, prescription medications, and illegal substances. For this reason, it is recommended women stay as drug-free as possible during their pregnancy. However, it is difficult for some pregnant women to accomplish this, especially if they are dependent on medications to function in their daily lives.

Diflucan is a medication that is prescribed to treat vaginal Candida infections, as well as urinary tract infections, peritonitis, pneumonia, and disseminated infections caused by Candida. If you are pregnant or are considering becoming pregnant and wonder if you can take Diflucan while pregnant, schedule a meeting with your doctor. Previously, it was believed that low doses of Diflucan were acceptable to take during pregnancy. This changed in 2016 when the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) released a statement urging doctors to use caution when prescribing this medication to pregnant patients. This is due to evidence linking Diflucan to birth defects in a newborn baby.

Will Taking Diflucan Cause Birth Defects?

Currently, the FDA is still deciding whether birth defects are associated with low doses of Diflucan. The FDA has classified Diflucan under category C when it comes to the safety of use during pregnancy. This category means the FDA cannot absolutely rule out the risks of negative effects the medication could have on a growing fetus or newborn. Since the FDA has not yet made a final decision, it is recommended doctors only prescribe this medication to pregnant patients when absolutely necessary. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends pregnant women avoid taking Diflucan altogether and opt for other products, like topical yeast infection treatments.

One study published in Denmark found that women who took oral Diflucan at high doses birthed babies with birth defects and other abnormalities.

Alternatives to taking Diflucan while pregnant

Pregnant women often experience yeast infections during pregnancy due to the hormonal changes their bodies go through. For this reason, the CDC has recommended alternative products to Diflucan to minimize the risk of birth defects as much as possible. Diflucan alternatives include Monistat and Gyne-Lotrimin. These products are topical antifungal medications that you can find in either vaginal cream or suppository forms. In addition, the CDC recommends pregnant women take longer treatments for yeast infections than products that offer shorter relief times.

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The Recovery Village aims to improve the quality of life for people struggling with substance use or mental health disorder with fact-based content about the nature of behavioral health conditions, treatment options and their related outcomes. We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers.