I cannot imagine a much more stressful scenario than being pregnant while also undergoing chemotherapy. All moms-to-be worry about the health of their growing babies. So many books tell pregnant moms to eat only organic foods, steer clear of chemicals in the home and air, and exercise frequently to ensure the healthiest conditions for their babies. But what if, while you are trying to grow a new life inside you, you are also fighting for your own?
In the past, researchers have suggested that pregnant women who have chemotherapy will increase their chances of giving birth to a child with a birth defect. But a new study refutes that theory and hopefully gives pregnant moms undergoing chemotherapy one less thing to worry about. The European study, led by researchers at the German Breast Group and published in The Lancet Oncology, found that chemotherapy during pregnancy will NOT increase the baby's risk for birth defects.
For the study, researchers evaluated the cases of 400 women from across Europe who were diagnosed with early-stage breast cancer while pregnant, a situation that many health experts say is happening more frequently due to the rise in mothers delaying childbirth until they are older. Just under half of the pregnant moms had chemotherapy, while the remaining moms-to-be did not. Researchers found the only difference with their newborns was a slightly lower birth weight among the moms who had undergone chemotherapy.
The number of chemotherapy treatments a pregnant mom endured also did not appear to have any effect on her babies’ health.
Source: Medline Plus