Long considered the safe go-to pain reliever for pregnant women, Tylenol has recently come under fire for its potential risk to unborn babies. Recent research has reported links between prenatal exposure to acetaminophen and later developmental problems in children. Although the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists hasn’t changed its stance on the drug’s safety, a study published in the journal PLOS ONE in September labeled the link a “public health concern.”
What is Acetaminophen?
Found in Tylenol, Midol, Nyquil and other medications, acetaminophen (also called paracetamol) is one of the most commonly used drugs in the world. In fact, it is the active ingredient in more than 600 pain relievers and fever reducers, according to Nature Reviews Endocrinology. Because NSAIDs like ibuprofen are generally not recommended in later pregnancy, acetaminophen is considered one of the only safe pain relievers for pregnant women. In the U.S., as many as 65% of pregnant women may use the drug.