Asthma is one of the most common medical conditions encountered during pregnancy, occurring in 3 to 8 percent of pregnant women [1-5]. Pregnancy may be associated with changes in the course of asthma, and asthma may affect the outcome of pregnancy.
The management of asthma in pregnancy, including general management issues, the safety data for specific asthma medications, and recommended pharmacotherapy for acute and chronic asthma in pregnancy, is reviewed here. The physiology and clinical course of asthma in pregnancy are discussed separately. (See "Physiology and clinical course of asthma in pregnancy".)
OVERVIEW OF MEDICATIONS IN PREGNANCY
Two important considerations arise with the use of any medication in pregnancy:
- Are there potential adverse effects of the medication on the developing fetus?
- Does pregnancy alter the metabolism or the bioavailability of the medication?
Potential adverse effects — Medications administered during pregnancy have been associated with an increased risk of several adverse outcomes, which are not independent, including: