Because Zyrtec-D (cetirizine and pseudoephedrine) has not been tested in pregnant women, the drug's effect on unborn children is unknown. However, a doctor may prescribe Zyrtec-D to a pregnant woman if he or she decides that its benefits outweigh any possible risks to the fetus. Be sure to let your healthcare provider know if you become pregnant while taking this drug.
Zyrtec-D may not be safe for use during pregnancy, although the full risks are not currently known. The product labeling warns that pregnant women should consult with their healthcare providers before taking it.
What Is Pregnancy Category C?
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) uses a category system to classify the possible risks to a fetus when a specific medicine is taken during pregnancy. Pregnancy Category C is given to medicines that have not been studied in pregnant humans but that do appear to cause harm to the fetus in animal studies.
In addition, medicines that have not been studied in any pregnant women or animals are automatically given a pregnancy Category C rating.
When given to pregnant rats, Zyrtec-D increased the risk of birth defects, specifically bone or skeletal defects. No problems were seen when the drug was given to pregnant rabbits.
However, animals do not always respond to medicines the same way that humans do. Therefore, a pregnancy Category C medicine may be given to a pregnant woman if her healthcare provider believes that the benefits to the woman outweigh any possible risks to the unborn child.
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