Evidently there is quite the discussion going on over at the Storkcalling Blog about whether or not it is safe to take Sudafed PE while pregnant. Let’s see what all the fuss is about….
"A friend of mine e-mailed me the following story on Sudafed and Sudafed PE."
"A few months back, I had a
terrible cold. My doctor told me to take Sudafed – Regular Sudafed,
not the cold and cough, or any of the other
combination ones. We already had that Sudafed at home, so I started
it. About 5 days later, the cough had gotten bad, and I don’t like
taking cough medicine, so I called the doctor to see if I could take
Sudafed cold and cough.
I checked the ingredients on the sudafed
and they were the same as taking regular Sudafed and Robitussin, which
is allowed when pregnant. [my husband] went to the pharmacy
to get it for me since the doctor said those ingredients that I read to
her were ok. Luckily, he told the pharmacist I was pregnant, just to
make sure they said it was ok, and they told him I could not take it. I
told him my doctor said it was ok, and went over the ingredients with
Her information was outdated. A while back, Sudafed changed their
because people were using it to make crystal meth. You can still buy
regular Sudafed, but it is behind the counter, and you have to sign for
it. What they now sell as "regular" sudafed over the counter is Sudafed
I called the doctor to see which one I was supposed to be taking, and the
nurse told me NOT to take the PE because it can constrict the blood
vessles around the placenta. She said as long as I still feel the baby
moving, everything is ok, but not to take it anymore. I called my
friend and she was also taking the Sudafed PE and had another friend
who was pregnant and had also taken it not knowing that there were 2
different ones out there."
It is important to know that due to the fact that original Sudafed is now behind the counter because illegal substances were being made from it, the makers of Sudafed have reformulated their product (now Sudafed PE) with a different type of decongestant called Phenyleprine, which is a vasoconstrictor. This ingredient, while useful to help nasal congestion by constricting the sinus blood vessels could also conceivably constrict the blood vessels around the placenta
in pregnant women.
I read this story to my friend, Lori, she’s been a nurse for over 16 years and she definitely knew the differences of the Sudafeds when I read the article to her. While she does note that regular Sudafed has been safe for pregnant women for years, she highly recommends you always check with your doctor first. But what if your doctor and the pharmacist don’t agree don’t agree on the safety of certain medications? Nurse Lori says, "Go with what the doctor says!" While pharmacists know all about drugs and medications only your doctors knows all about you!