December 1977

Teratogenicity of Anticonvulsive Medications

Author Affiliations

Dysmorphology Unit Department of Pediatrics University of Washington School of Medicine Seattle, WA 98195

Am J Dis Child. 1977;131(12):1337-1339. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1977.02120250019001

The report by Feldman et al in this issue of the Journal (see p 1389) further indicts trimethadione, of the oxazolidinedione class of drugs, as one of the most potent teratogenic agents yet recognized in man. More than 80% of reported conceptuses exposed to trimethadione in utero have either been spontaneously aborted or malformed at birth. The phenotype has been similar in affected individuals and has been noted in the offspring of women who received trimethadione as the only anticonvulsant medication during pregnancy; hence the fetal trimethadione syndrome designation seems appropriate. The dysmorphic facies with a Mephistophelian upward slant to the eyebrows and the aberrant auricles appear to be the most consistent and unusual features along with mild to moderate growth deficiency. The most serious consequence is mental deficiency and the most frequent major malformations are cleft lip and/or cleft palate and cardiac defects.

The concern about the teratogenic impact

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