Document Detail

Evaluating the safety of St. John's Wort in human pregnancy.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  19491000     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
St. John's Wort is a herbal therapy, shown to be effective in treating mild to moderate depression; a disease common in women in their childbearing years. With a significant proportion of unplanned pregnancies, exposure to St. John's Wort into pregnancy is expected to occur. The purpose of this study was to determine whether exposure to this agent in pregnancy is associated with major malformations. We prospectively collected and followed subjects taking St. John's Wort and compared them to a matched group of pregnant women taking other pharmacologic therapy for depression and a third group of healthy women, not exposed to any known teratogens. We obtained follow-up information on 54 St. John's Wort exposed pregnancies and 108 pregnancies in the two comparator groups. Our results indicated that the rates of major malformations were similar across the three groups, with 5%, 4% and 0% in the St. John's Wort, disease comparator, and health group, respectively (p=0.26), This was not different that the 3-5% risk expected in the general population. The live birth and prematurity rates were also not different among the three groups. Though further large scale studies are still needed, this first study on the effects of St. John's Wort in human pregnancy does provide some evidence of fetal safety.
Myla E Moretti; Ashley Maxson; Fionna Hanna; Gideon Koren
Publication Detail:
Type:  Evaluation Studies; Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't     Date:  2009-02-24
Journal Detail:
Title:  Reproductive toxicology (Elmsford, N.Y.)     Volume:  28     ISSN:  1873-1708     ISO Abbreviation:  Reprod. Toxicol.     Publication Date:  2009 Jul 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2009-06-03     Completed Date:  2009-07-23     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8803591     Medline TA:  Reprod Toxicol     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  96-9     Citation Subset:  IM    
The Motherisk Program, Division of Clinical Pharmacology & Toxicology, The Hospital for Sick Children, 555 University Avenue, Toronto, ON, Canada.
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MeSH Terms
Abnormalities, Drug-Induced / etiology*
Antidepressive Agents / adverse effects*
Birth Weight / drug effects
Case-Control Studies
Consumer Product Safety
Depression / drug therapy*
Live Birth
Plant Preparations / adverse effects
Pregnancy Complications / drug therapy*
Premature Birth / chemically induced
Prospective Studies
Risk Assessment
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Antidepressive Agents; 0/Plant Preparations

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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