The efficacy of sulfanilamide and its derivatives in the treatment of certain infections has been amply demonstrated. Their use during pregnancy is often indicated, notably in the treatment of gonorrhea and pyelitis,1 and since these compounds occasionally have serious toxic effects, such as hemolytic and aplastic anemia, hepatitis and dermatitis, it is of interest to explore the possibility of injury to the fetus and the nursling when these drugs are used during pregnancy and the puerperium.
It was shown by Marshall2 in 1938 that after sulfanilamide is administered it becomes equally distributed in the tissues with the exception of bone and fat, and that if concentrations are expressed per unit of water it is probably present in equal proportions in all parts of the body. At about the same time a number of reports3 indicated that sulfanilamide readily passes through the placenta and within five hours appears
HECKEL GP. CHEMOTHERAPY DURING PREGNANCYDANGER OF FETAL INJURY FROM SULFANILAMIDE AND ITS DERIVATIVES. JAMA. 1941;117(16):1314–1316. doi:10.1001/jama.1941.02820420006002